Category - Security
Editor's Note: as MacNN closes at the end of this month, we're showcasing some of our favorite pieces from its recent history. I'm Malcolm Owen, and I helped out on a series of reports concerning a collection of "bundle" sites that sold licenses for a number of apps, but failed to pay the developers behind those apps. The first report appeared in November, with an updated reminder of what was going on published in April this year, the content of which is repeated below.
This isn't going to sound like a compliment, but it is: we've practically nothing to say about this backup app. That would be because it does the job, though, and that not only can we quickly start using it, but we can quickly forget about it, too. Mac Backup Guru 6.0 is a way to make a complete copy ("clone") of your whole hard disk, a backup of important documents, and a regular copy of either. It does what it says it will, and where it's noteworthy is in how easily it does all this.
The kernel code at the heart of iOS 10 is unencrypted for performance purposes, Apple has advised. Following after the discovery of the kernel being issued without encryption as part of the iOS 10 beta ahead of its general release this fall, Apple claims the change from using an encrypted kernel for this version was an intentional decision by the company for valid reasons, instead of a mistake in the mobile operating system's creation and distribution.
Apple left the kernel of iOS 10 unencrypted in its beta release of the mobile operating system, it has been discovered. Security experts discovered the kernel, the core of the operating system itself, wasn't encrypted as it usually is for a release, though it is unclear if it is a mistake on the part of Apple's engineers, or a way for the company to improve the security of the code before it is encrypted and released to the public this fall.
A lawsuit borne of the short-lived "Error 53" issue that happened to some iOS devices where the Touch ID button had been replaced or repaired by unauthorized non-Apple personnel was dismissed on Tuesday by a US District Court judge, who rejected both the plaintiff's original complaints and their amended claims following Apple's release of a tool to restore iPhones bricked by the anti-tampering feature, which was designed to prevent third-parties from altering or hacking into the Touch ID sensor.
It's time for episode 67, and we're going to mix it up a bit this week. Mike and Charles, both of whom are former residents of Orlando, start off the show talking about the mass shooting there, and (despite very different political leanings) come up with a reasonable and rational set of proposals that would dramatically cut down on such tragedies (with proof) while preserving protected liberties, and thus no rational person would disagree. Oops, we can already see the flaw in that plan from here.
A recently-discovered jailbreak technique that is claimed to work in iOS 9.3.2 will not work when iOS 10 is released to the public this fall. The browser-based exploit for the current version of the mobile operating system, discovered by Luca "qwertyoruiop" Todesco last month, has apparently already been closed by Apple, rending the jailbreak that leveraged the security flaw useless to people who upgrade.
Developers and other testers have gotten their hands on the preview releases of the next major versions of each of Apple's four platforms -- the newly-renamed macOS Sierra (formerly OS X 10.12), iOS 10, watchOS 3, and tvOS 10. Beyond the announced feature set seen during the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote, there have been a number of discoveries of unannounced changes, additional (minor) features, and other small tweaks and surprises. While they may change (or even be withdrawn) before the final release, here are some that caught our attention.
There are, it would seem, two types of iPhone owners: those who buy their device based on price, and thus don't really consider how much storage it has, for one reason or another -- and those who write angry letters to Tim Cook every month demanding a 1TB capacity iPhone. Long-time Mac and iPhone users who have been using the devices for a long time are dumbfounded that Apple still offers a 16GB base capacity for most of its iOS devices (and still offers "anemic" base storage levels for some Macs, like the MBA), but this Pointers will lead you down the path of Zen, and the validation of all things. Even 16GB.
Starting with macOS Sierra, Apple is making it more difficult for unsigned apps to be launched. The option, present in OS X 10.11 to always allow unsigned apps to open has been stricken from Gatekeeper, limiting users by default to App Store and App Store plus identified developers. The ability by users to launch unsigned apps remains in the operating system in a different form, however.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE