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You need to update Apple OS X and Safari right now

The newly revealed Pegasus spyware affects more than just iPhones.


Andrew Couts


Posted on Sep 2, 2016   Updated on May 26, 2021, 2:54 am CDT

Have you updated your iPhone yet? If not, go do that right now. And while you’re at it, update your Mac to the latest version of OS X—yes, right now. 

Earlier this week, researchers uncovered the existence of spyware that is capable of gaining access to everything on your iPhone—and we mean everything: your text messages, phone calls, and even web activity to all your apps. And it can infect your device simply by clicking a link. 

Turns out, the flaws that made this spyware possible also affect OS X Yosemite (10.10) and OS X El Capitan (10.11). 

If you have OS X 10.10, you’ll need to run updates for both Safari and OS X. OS X 10.11 users have only one update, which includes patches for both the operating system and a new version of Safari that closes the gaps. 

To update your Mac, simply click the Apple icon in the top-left corner > About this Mac > Software Update > update everything. Doing this will fix major flaws that could allow hackers to completely take over not just your device but everything you do on that device. It is worth the annoyance of pausing whatever you’re doing to install this update, we promise. 

The updates to iOS and OS X follow reports by researchers at Citizen Lab and security firm Lookout, who discovered a cyberweapon codenamed Pegasus that was created by Israeli software maker NSO Group. It was used to target human rights activist Ahmed Mansoor. Pegusus consists of three zero-day exploits—attacks on flaws in Apple’s code that nobody knew existed before now—that can completely take over a targeted device.

Now that these flaws are out in the open, you are even more vulnerable to hackers.

To get the full details on just how nasty Pegasus is and how it affected its targets, listen to our Layer 8 Podcast below:

Contact the author: Andrew Couts,

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*First Published: Sep 2, 2016, 10:43 am CDT