August 25, 2016 Last Updated 12:18 pm

Apple issues iOS 9.3.5 security update in response to software vulnerability

Update fixes opening being exploited by firms selling solutions to governments used in monitoring activists, and could be the last such update released until the introduction of iOS 10 in September

At some point today, if you own an iOS device, you will be informed that there is an update. This one might well be worth your time to download and install.

The update brings the mobile operating system up to version iOS 9.3.5, and may well be the last one issued before the release of iOS 10 at the end of September.


According to news sources, the update addresses security vulnerabilities that were being exploited by an Israeli company called NSO Group. The company was selling its services to foreign governments and claimed it could monitor users of iPhones, as well as other devices.

The goal, of course, was to monitor the activities of activists and dissidents.

“A controversial part about companies like NSO is that they usually rely on exploiting security holes in consumer software to help law enforcement and spies. For the companies to continue operating, these security holes need to be left unpatched,” The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this month.

“We’re a complete ghost,” NSO co-founder Omri Lavie told Defense News, a military trade publication, last summer. “We’re totally transparent to the target, and we leave no traces.”

Senior Researchers at the Citizen Lab identified the United Arab Emirates government as one of those clients using NSO’s Pegasus, a government-exclusive spyware product.

To load the malware, NSO spoofed commonly used websites including media sites such as Aljazeera, the BBC, CNN, Las Ultimas Noticias and Univision, as well as YouTube, Google and Facebook.

Well, they likely didn’t sit well with Apple, and today they are issuing the patch.

If you have not seen the update come through, don’t worry it will. In fact, as this post was being written the update for the iPad came through, as you can see above.

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