Apple issues security updates for Mac and iOS to stop potential attack through Wi-Fi

Apple has issued critical security patches for iOS devices and for Macintosh computers to thwart a potential hacker attack that could come remotely via Wi-Fi.

The dangerous vulnerability, called Broadpwn,had been exposed by a security researcher Nitay Artenstein of Exodus Intelligence, who indicated that a malicious hacker could compromise devices through a bug within Broadcom’s Wi-Fi chipsets. As long as the attacker is within range, he or she may be able to “execute arbitrary code on the Wi-Fi chip.”

Broadpwn is indeed a potentially a serious threat. According to the National Vulnerability Database that is part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology or NIST, Broadpwn gets a 9.8 out of 10, a severity scored dubbed “critical.”

The vulnerability also had the potential to attack Android devices; Google issued its own security patch earlier this month.

Mac users are urged to install the macOS Sierra update to version 10.12.6. Start by clicking the Updates tab within the Mac App Store.

If you have an iPhone or other iOS device, head to Settings, General and then Software Update to install iOS 10.3.3. The iOS update covers iPhone dating back to the iPhone 5, iPads dating back to the 4th generation, as well as the 6th generation iPod Touch.

The update also applies other bug fixes.

Email; ebaig@usatoday.com; Follow USA TODAY Personal Tech Columnist @edbaig on Twitter

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