Apple has released an urgent update to iOS 9 (9.3.5) and iOS 10 beta that includes a patch to fix a security vulnerability on your iPhone and iPad.

Senior Researchers at the Citizen Lab, with assistance from the research team at Lookout Security, discovered that a link sent via SMS text message led to an exploit that allowed his iPhone to be jailbroken remotely.  According to Citizen Lab, this exploit would allow hackers to remotely install spyware to control things on his phone like his camera and microphone; access information in chat apps like WhatsApp, Viber, and Facebook messenger; and even track his movements.

Security vulnerabilities like this are rare considering the tight integration Apple has over its hardware and software. And as soon as the exploit was known, they partnered with Apple who immediately created the fix to ensure your device is safe from the malware.

So what do you need to do?

It’s always a good idea to back up your device before updating it.  Check out Apple’s support page to learn how to back up your iPhone or iPad wirelessly with iCloud or using iTunes.

If you’re running iOS 9, the easiest way to update your iPhone or iPad is over Wi-Fi.Settings app_iPhone

Settings app w/Notification alert from iOS 9 page on Apple.com

First, tap the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.  It may already have a notification alert like this one.

If you have too many apps on your device and aren’t sure where the Settings app is, here’s a few easy ways to get to it:

  • Drag to the right—or drag down—from your Home screen to show Search. Tap the search field and type “settings”, then tap the Settings app.
  • Use Siri to open Settings by holding down your Home button, then just say “Open Settings”.

From here, tap General, then Software Update—and select Download and Install.  The download requires a Wi-Fi connection—so make sure you’re connected to a stable signal (like at home) and keep your device plugged into the charger the entire time.

Update iPhone

If you’re running iOS 10 beta, ensure you’ve installed the latest iOS 10 seed.  For developers that’s iOS 10 beta 7, and if you’re using the public beta it’s iOS 10 beta 6.

If you’d prefer to update your iPhone or iPad using iTunes on your computer, check out Apple’s support page.

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