Great headline fodder but…both ‘attacks’ can be mitigated quite simply. 1. Only use your own cables; 2. Don’t pass out in public places…:
For the majority of users, the security offered by iOS and macOS is more than enough, and they can go about their day-to-day business secure in the knowledge that their data is safe.
But a determined criminals can find a way around these safeguards, and while these two hacks are impractical for widespread use, they go to show just how creative ne’er-do-wells can be when it comes to cracking security measures.
First, let’s look at how a cable can be used to hack a Mac. Enter the O.MG Cable. This is an Apple Lightning charging cable with a twist. That twist is that it has been custom-modified with electronics that allow it to be used to access any Mac it has been connected to over a Wi-Fi network.
OMG! 2 months + 8 devs + O•MG Cable = malicious wireless implant update!
— _MG_ (@_MG_) April 12, 2019
“In the end, I was able to create 100 percent of the implant in my kitchen and then integrate it into a cable. And these prototypes at DEF CON were mostly done the same way,” MG, the creator of the cable, told Vice.
The cables retail for $200 each.
The O.MG Cable also features a remote kill switch as a way to hide its existence.
How do you prevent these sorts of hacks? Use your own cable (customize it in a way unique to you so it can’t be surreptitiously replaced) and don’t plug charging cables into computers.
As for hacking into an iPhone, security researchers at the Black Hat hacker convention in Las Vegas managed to bypass the iPhone’s Face ID authentication system in 120 seconds.
Sounds scary, doesn’t it? But in reality this hack requires the victim to be a really heavy sleeper (or being unconscious) because the hack relies on the hacker being able to place a pair of custom spectacles on the face of victim to fool the iPhone’s Face ID system into thinking the user is awake and deliberately unlocking their iPhone.