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Tech

Can iPhones Catch Viruses and Malware?

 May 15, 2020

By  Tim Starnes

iPhone viruses and malware have been around for the last decade and becoming more common. The idea that iPhones can’t be infected with viruses and malware is a myth, however, frequency is another question completely.

Most true security vulnerabilities are quickly patched by Apple through updates. Long-lasting security loopholes are rare and shouldn’t be a problem for iPhone users who ensure they regularly install updates.

Targeted attacks, the singling out of an individual or group, are much more common in terms of iPhone viruses and malware, such as a stalker scenario or corporate espionage. Scatter-shot attacks akin to viruses and malware for PCs are less common.

How Can I Protect Myself?

  1. Keep an eye on the news for announcements of new security incidents.
  • Ensure your phone stays up to date.
  • Never open links that you don’t recognize or look strange, even from numbers or contacts you know – as these can be spoofed.

Getting the Latest iPhone:

New operating system vulnerabilities are common and are usually patched within the first few months. These flaws are generally annoyances and rather minor, such as certain types of messages and apps causing the phone to crash to home – nothing particularly dangerous in terms of security.

iPhones are a closed ecosystem, meaning there aren’t a lot of security options for them other than automatic updates. Apple keeps tight controls on its software, making it difficult for companies such as Norton to put out security software for them.

Phishing Attacks:

Should you receive a link by text message, if the link is unexpected or looks odd, call the sender directly to verify they sent it. (If the link was sent by text, do not verify by text! If a cyberattacker has gained control of the phone, those can easily be sent.)

Wi-Fi Worries:

Connecting an iPhone to wi-fi is safe if the source is trustworthy. For example, if you’re traveling and need to connect to wi-fi at the airport because your signal is spotty, consider the fact that the source isn’t completely trustworthy, but is not the worst thing to do – information out of cell phones is generally encrypted, meaning that if an attacker is scanning the information whizzing around the air, they wouldn’t be able to easily access and read the content.

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In Summary:

Generally, cyberattacks on iPhones are rare, isolated incidents. Viruses are available for iPhone operating systems, but these are generally installed by the phone’s user accidentally by following a URL.

Most true security vulnerabilities are quickly patched by Apple through updates. Long-lasting security loopholes are rare and shouldn’t be a problem for iPhone users who ensure they regularly install updates.

Follow these three easy steps, and you should keep your iPhone virus and malware-free.

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