A serious bug in Apple’s FaceTime application allows users to listen in on the people they are calling when they do not pick up the call. Under certain circumstances, the glitch also allows callers to see video of the person they are calling before they pick up.
The Guardian confirmed the existence of the bug, which was first reported by 9to5Mac, something that Apple didn’t initially acknowledge.
The bug turns the phone of the recipient of a FaceTime call into a microphone while the call is still ringing. If the recipient of the call presses the power button on the side of the iPhone – an action that is typically used to silence or ignore an incoming call – their phone will begin broadcasting video to the initial caller.
Later on, Apple acknowledged a flaw in its FaceTime software that allowed for brief eavesdropping – even if the recipient did not pick up.
In some cases the target iPhone would send video, probably without the receiver’s knowledge.
The company said it had developed a fix and an update would be rolled out.
The technique involves using the software’s group chat function, apparently confusing the software into activating the target’s microphone, even if the call had not been accepted.
The eavesdropping ends when the call is cut after too many rings.
Via Guardian – BBC