This Malicious Video Link Can Cause Any iOS Device to Freeze; Requires Hard Reboot

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This Malicious Video Link Can Cause Any iOS Device to Freeze; Requires Hard Reboot
  • The video link freezes the iPhone entirely
  • The best workaround is rebooting the iPhone
  • No long term effects of malicious link have been reported so far

There have been message-based bugs in the past that have caused iOS devices freeze. Apple however has been very pro-active when it comes to releasing fixes for such bugs. A newly found malicious video link has been discovered that causes any iPhone to freeze completely. Unfortunately, Apple is yet to acknowledge the bug.

The malicious video link, first reported by EverythingApplePro, causes any iOS device whether an iPhone, iPad, or an iPod touch, to completely freeze when opened in Safari. The only workaround is hard reboot the device to get the device back in working condition. On models older than the iPhone 7, users will need to hold down the power button and Home button at the same time to hard reboot the smartphone. On the iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, users will need to long press the Home button and the volume down key simultaneously.

Softpedia lists the malicious link, but we advise readers to think twice before sharing it. Notably, the link affects a vast range of iOS versions - from the latest iOS 10 deta 3 build, to versions as far back as iOS 5 - notes 9to5Mac. EverythingApplePro claims that the issue doesn't have a long lasting effect and the affected device is back in working state as soon as it's restarted. We tested out the link on a 9.7-inch iPad Pro and an iPhone 7, and found that the link indeed froze our devices - with hard reboot the only recourse.

When a user taps on the link, which could be shared in a number of ways, it opens a 3-second MP4 video in Safari. The real problem only starts after a few seconds as the iPhone starts slowing down after opening the link. The video link is said to be corrupted which leads to memory leak. Though the real reason for the iOS device to become slow isn't clear as of now. Apple is expected to release an update that will fix the malicious link issue.

Recently, a lock screen bypass was also discovered that allowed iPhone users to view contact and photo albums on the iPhone SE, iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6s Plus without unlocking the devices with a passcode or Touch ID fingerprint.


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Further reading: Apple, Mobiles, iPhones, iPhone, iOS 10
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