Security & Privacy

Apple iOS 6.1.3 Update Fixes Passcode Bug

Posted on March 19th, 2013 by

Apple's iOS 6.1.3 update fixes passcode bugApple has released security updates for iOS with an update to version 6.1.3, designed to resolve a bug that allows anyone to bypass the lockscreen on a passcode-protected iPhone. Before the fix, hackers could have potentially accessed your phone application, looked through photos on the device, listened to your voice mails, and placed calls. This software update fixes six flaws altogether, affecting iPhone 3GS and later, iPod touch (4th generation) and later, and iPad 2 and later.

Apple described the passcode bug and their resolution as follows:

A person with physical access to the device may be able to bypass the screen lock. A logic issue existed in the handling of emergency calls from the lock screen. This issue was addressed through improved lock state management.

In addition to resolving the iOS lockscreen flaw (CVE-2013-0980), this update also fixes vulnerabilities that will prevent the use of the popular jailbreak software evasi0n, which Charlie Miller has predicted will be “the last public jailbreak ever released.”

As news broke of the iOS 6.1.3 update, other Twitter users chimed in, too:

The Evasi0n jailbreak tool became the most popular jailbreak ever with nearly seven million iOS devices hacked just four days removed from of its official release date, according to Forbes. Perhaps with Charlie Miller’s gloomy prediction coupled with huge numbers of iOS users jailbreaking their iPhones, many people may wish to keep their jailbreak and live with the lockscreen flaws.

Updated March 20, 2013 for security contents of iOS 6.1.3

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Following are descriptions of the six iOS vulnerabilities resolved in this update:

  • CVE-2013-0977 : A state management issue existed in the handling of Mach-O executable files with overlapping segments. This issue was addressed by refusing to load an executable with overlapping segments.
  • CVE-2013-0978 : An information disclosure issue existed in the ARM prefetch abort handler. This issue was addressed by panicking if the prefetch abort handler is not being called from an abort context.
  • CVE-2013-0979 : When restoring from backup, lockdownd changed permissions on certain files even if the path to the file included a symbolic link. This issue was addressed by not changing permissions on any file with a symlink in its path.
  • CVE-2013-0980 : A logic issue existed in the handling of emergency calls from the lock screen. This issue was addressed through improved lock state management.
  • CVE-2013-0981 : The IOUSBDeviceFamily driver used pipe object pointers that came from userspace. This issue was addressed by performing additional validation of pipe object pointers.
  • CVE-2013-0912 : An invalid cast issue existed in the handling of SVG files. This issue was addressed through improved type checking.

Apple iOS users can download and install the 28.5 MB update in iTunes or through your device Settings (select General > Software Update).

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