O'Grady's PowerPage

Researcher finds Sparkle framework vulnerability, highlights popular apps that could be exploited

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, February 10th, 2016, 08:31
Category: News, OS X, security, Software, Yosemite

trojanhorse

Well, this is a mess.

A “huge” number of third-party Mac apps are under threat of man-in-the-middle attacks due to a recently discovered vulnerability in Sparkle, an open source framework used to facilitate software updates.

The flaw, which centered around a flawed WebKit rendering engine implementation found in certain Sparkle builds, is to blame for the newly discovered attack that allows malicious users to insert and execute JavaScript code when affected app check for software updates.

Along with a flawed Sparkle version, vulnerable apps must also be running an unencrypted HTTP channel to receive software updates from offsite servers. This can allow other users to capture network traffic and thereby run malicious code on a target computer. The exploit has been cited by a software engineer called “Radek”, who confirmed the exploit affects apps running on the latest versions of OS X 10.11 El Capitan and OS X 10.10 Yosemite.

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Sonos to officially support Apple Music starting today

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, February 10th, 2016, 07:15
Category: Apple Music, Hardware, News, Retail Store

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Following its public beta last December, Sonos has announced that it will officially add support for Apple Music to its connected speaker lineup tomorrow, February 10th.

“We’re big fans of Sonos,” Apple senior vice president of internet software and services Eddy Cue said to BuzzFeed. “We’ve been looking forward to this.” When asked why Sonos didn’t support Apple Music from the start, especially considering it supported Beats Music, Cue explained that it took some time to get it right. “It’s important to get the integration right the first time out,” Cue said. “Apple has a high bar for this stuff; So does Sonos. Apple Music isn’t even 6 months old yet, so this really did not take much time at all.”

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Legal ground work begins towards class action lawsuit following iPhone Error 53 controversy

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, February 9th, 2016, 08:32
Category: iPhone, Legal, News

error53

It was bound to happen.

In the wake of the iPhone Error 53 bricking issue, The law firm of PVCA hasn’t filed a case against Apple yet, but is looking for iPhone owners ready to sign up for a class action lawsuit.

As mentioned before, iPhone 6 and 6 Plus owners who had their Home button and Touch ID components repaired by a third party are encountering Error 53 if the parts aren’t properly installed and paired with the rest of the device. Apple says it’s a security feature to prevent anyone from bypassing the built-in personal data and privacy safeguards.

PVCA offered the following opinion on the matter:

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Apple launches iPhone screen protector program in assorted Apple Store retail locations

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, February 9th, 2016, 08:14
Category: Hardware, iPhone, News, retail

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Apple’s new screen protector program is coming to Apple Store locations in the United States and other countries today. The program was first mentioned and rolled out to Japanese Apple Store locations last week and allows customers to get a Belkin screen protector carefully applied to their iPhone in store. At Apple Stores across America, customers can purchase a Belkin screen protector and have it applied in store by an Apple Store employee. The program supports only Apple’s latest iPhone models in both 4.7 and 5.5 inch variants: the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.

The service looks to apply screen protectors to the iPhone, eliminating common errors like air bubbles. For the official experience, Apple employees will use a cloth to remove any dust from the iPhone before applying the protector with the mechanical system. As a guarantee, after application, unsatisfied customers can ask the Apple employee to repeat the process with a new cover to get the fit just right. The service is free with the purchase of the appropriate Belkin screen protector for your iPhone.

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Rumor: Apple quietly launches Mac Pro Repair Extension Program for certain Mac Pro models

Posted by:
Date: Monday, February 8th, 2016, 08:30
Category: Hardware, Mac Pro, Rumor

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If you have a 2013 or later Mac Pro, it looks like Apple will be launching a Mac Pro Repair Extension Program to address complaints of video related issues with select models of the desktop.

Apple recently sent out a notice to its authorized service providers detailing the new program and those eligible for repairs or replacements.

In the notice, Apple notes that Mac Pros manufactured between February 8, 2015 and April 11, 2015 are eligible for repairs due to issues with the machine’s graphics cards that “may cause distorted video, no video, system instability, freezing, restarts, shut downs, or may prevent system start up.”

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iPhone 6 users cite “Error 53” issue, Apple cracking down on third-party repairs

Posted by:
Date: Friday, February 5th, 2016, 11:25
Category: Hardware, iOS, iPhone, News

error53

Well, this is a royal mess.

A large number of iPhone 6 users are claiming that Apple’s latest operating system permanently disables the handset if it detects that a repair has been carried out by a non-Apple technician.

The issue, an “Error 53”, appears when the Touch ID button has been replaced by a “non-official” outfit or technician. The error, according to at least one report, “will kill your iPhone”.

The issue only comes to light when the latest version of Apple’s iPhone software, iOS 9, is installed. Indeed, the phone may have been working perfectly for weeks or months since a repair or being damaged.

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Apple Universal Search function now covers Fox Now, National Geographic, other apps

Posted by:
Date: Friday, February 5th, 2016, 08:44
Category: Apple TV, News, Siri, Software

Apple-TV

Apple has boosted its Universal Search option on the fourth-gem Apple TV a bit.

The Universal Search feature allows users to find content across multiple apps and services using text or Siri voice search. At launch, universal search worked with iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, HBO, and Showtime, but Apple promised to expand the feature to include additional content sources over time.

As of Thursday, the Universal Search feature now works with apps such as Fox Now, FXNOW and National Geographic. Apple also expanded universal search to include PBS and PBS Kids in January.

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Apple begins two new Apple Store iPhone incentive programs, goes after broken devices, offers protective screen replacement

Posted by:
Date: Friday, February 5th, 2016, 08:44
Category: iPhone, News, retail

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These could be two interesting moves on Apple’s part.

Apple is gearing up to launch a pair of new retail initiatives centered around the iPhone: an upgraded iPhone trade-in program for iPhones with damaged screens, cameras, or buttons, and a new program that allows Apple Retail Stores to install screen protectors on iPhones.

As of this week, Apple updated its Apple Store Reuse and Recycle iPhone trade-in program currently allows a customer to bring in an older iPhone model and trade it in for credit toward the purchase of a new iPhone model. The revised program will allow Apple Stores to give credit for iPhone 5s and iPhone 6/6 Plus units with damaged displays, cameras, and buttons within reason. Apple believes that this new program will encourage new iPhone upgrades versus a standard iPhone screen repair.

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Patent application hints at greater use, functionality for Touch ID button

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, February 4th, 2016, 12:58
Category: News, Patents

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This could lead to something interesting.

A recently published patent application describes how the Touch ID home button could gain additional functionality, allowing it to perform different actions in response to different fingerprints, as well as adding pressure sensors to provide it with 3D Touch type functionality.

The patent hints at how it might allow different fingerprints to access a device, but restrict their access to particular apps and for a limited time. The obvious application here would be allowing a child to use only specific apps and/or limit the time they are allowed to use a device.

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Apple adds new data for 20 locations to Apple Maps

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, February 4th, 2016, 08:14
Category: iOS, News, Software

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It never hurts when a new clump of data is added to the Apple Maps database.

On Wednesday, Apple announced that 3D Flyover, traffic and point of interest data had been added for 20 locations to its in-house mapping solution, including popular locales like the Virgin Islands and Taiwan.

The company listed the following locations:

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