Download Now: Apple Rolls Out Fix for FaceTime Bug

Isaac Cain
February 8, 2019

Apple said Thursday it will contribute to a teenager's college fund and pay a bounty to him and his family for discovering a software flaw that allowed people to eavesdrop on others while using FaceTime on iPhones.

Users can download the new software update, labeled iOS 12.1.4, by going to their device's Settings, then General and then Software Update.

Following the rollout of iOS 12.1.4, Apple will switch group FaceTime calls back on, but only for those who have applied the update.

The bug allowed eavesdropping by someone calling their FaceTime contacts, receiving audio from them without their knowledge before they answered the call. It mitigates what the company describes as a "logic issue [that] existed in the handling of Group FaceTime calls".

Apple acted quickly because the bug was particularly easy to exploit: a caller just needed to start a FaceTime video call, and while it was ringing, add themselves (via their phone number or Apple ID) to make it a conference call.

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Two key US House of Representatives Democrats on Tuesday asked Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook to answer questions about the bug, saying they were "deeply troubled" over how long it took Apple to address the security flaw. Macs are also getting an updated version of macOS 10.14.3 to fix the Group FaceTime flaw, as this feature is also built into that platform.

The update is about 335MB is size and you'll have to connect to a WiFi connection to download. You can read the full security update details here.

In a recent interview with CNBC, Grant and Michele Thompson revealed that an Apple executive (they wouldn't reveal who) flew out to meet with them both after the news broke about the FaceTime bug.

From this menu tap Software Update and check if any updates are ready for your device.

Following the release of these patches, the system status page on Apple's website has also been updated to reflect the situation.

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