Meltdown, Specter bugs: Apple iPhones, ipad, Macs at risk

The two security flaws were reported earlier this week and have been named Meltdown (impacts only Intel chips) and Spectre, which impacts pretty much every known modern processor including Intel, ARM, AMD. Now Apple has also issued a statement on the same saying all Macs and iOS devices are impacted by this security flaw.

Despite concern that fixes may slow down devices, Apple said its steps to address the Meltdown issue haven't dented performance.

Two bugs - Meltdown and Spectre - have been identified which could now leak your sensitive data like passwords, photos, business documents to hackers thanks to "design flaws" in their manufacture.

"All Mac systems and iOS devices are affected, but there are no known exploits impacting customers at this time", the company said.

"Since exploiting many of these issues requires a malicious app to be loaded on your Mac or iOS device, we recommend downloading software only from trusted sources such as the App Store", the company adds.

Known as "Spectre" and "Meltdown", the issues "apply to all modern processors and affect almost all computing devices and operating systems", Apple said in a press release.

Apple explains that Meltdown "has the the most potential to be exploited", while Spectre is "extremely difficult" to exploit.

Apple watch however was safe from the security flaw. With Safari and virtually all other popular browsers not patched, hundreds of millions of iPhone and iPad users may have no secure means of browsing the web until Apple issues its patch.

Intel confirmed a potential security flaw in its chips causing all tech majors to rush to fix the bugs through emergency updates to supported versions. Apple will release an update for Safari on macOS and iOS in the coming days to mitigate these exploit techniques.

Apple is continuously developing and testing various mitigations and will release new updates further in all iOS, macOS and tvOS to tackle the situation.

Apple said there are no known exploits for the vulnerabilities and said the iOS and MacOS updates "resulted in no measurable reduction in the performance of macOS and iOS" as measured by various benchmark tests.

  • Kara Saunders