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Apple lashes out against Google over iPhone hack report

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San Francisco: Apple has slammed Google for creating a false impression about its iPhones being at hacking risk owing to security flaws that allegedly let several malicious websites break into its iOS operating system.
Researchers working in Google’s Project Zero team had discovered several hacked websites that used security flaws in iPhones to attack users who visited these websites compromising their personal files, messages, and real-time location data. In a statement, Apple said the so-called sophisticated attack was narrowly focused, not a broad-based exploit of iPhones “en masse” as described.

“The attack affected fewer than a dozen websites that focus on content related to the Uighur community. Regardless of the scale of the attack, we take the safety and security of all users extremely seriously,” the Cupertino-based iPhone maker said on Friday.

“Google’s post, issued six months after iOS patches were released, creates the false impression of ‘mass exploitation’ to ‘monitor the private activities of entire populations in real time’, stoking fear among all iPhone users that their devices had been compromised. This was never the case,” Apple said. According to Google, the websites delivered their malware indiscriminately and were operational for years.

According to the iPhone maker, “all evidence indicates that these website attacks were only operational for a brief period, roughly two months, not ‘two years’ as Google implies”.

Google’s Threat Analysis Group (TAG) discovered that there was no target discrimination as simply visiting the hacked site was enough for the exploit server to attack the iPhone, and if it was successful, install a monitoring implant.
“We estimate that these sites receive thousands of visitors per week,” said the Google blog post. Google researchers also said they identified a vulnerability that accessed all the database files on the victim’s iPhone used by end-to-end encryption apps like WhatsApp, Telegram and iMessage.

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Woman, three children die in fire in UP village

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Banda, Dec 26 : Three children and their mother were burnt to death in a fire which spread from a bonfire in Dubey Purva Mau village in Banda district of Uttar Pradesh.

Additional Superintendent of Police, Mahendra Pratap Chauhan, said, “Kallu, a resident of Dubey Purva village in Marka police station area in Banda district is a daily wager from Jaipur, Rajasthan. He lived there along with his wife and three children. The sparks emanating from the bonfire lit due to the cold gutted the entire house. Possible other reasons behind the fire are also being probed.”

According to the locals, the villagers raised an alarm when they saw the flames engulfing Kallu’s house. By the time they were able to break open the door, the entire house had turned into rubble. There was only burnt debris and smoke everywhere. On receiving information, the police arrived and the fire brigade too reached the site.

Villagers said the mother and her three children were burnt to death in the fire in the kuccha house which began from a bonfire. The police and the fire brigade personnel put out the fire and removed the bodies from the rubble.

The Sub-Divisional Magistrate said prima facie the cause of the fire appears to be the sparks from the bonfire. But only an investigation can confirm the actual reason.

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