16:14 23rd Dec, 2014
Apple Rolls Out Its First Ever Automatic Security Update For OS X
The company was forced to do so after security researchers found a critical flaw with the NTP
Tech giant Apple has been forced to push out its first ever automatic update for OS X after a critical security issue in the network time protocol (NTP) was unearthed. The update will help defend against newly discovered bugs that researchers have warned could help hackers gain control of machines remotely.
The bug was made public last Friday by the Department of Homeland Security and the Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute. The company rolled out the fix on Monday to fix the vulnerabilities in the NTP component of its OS X operating system. The NTP is used for synchronizing clocks on a computer.
Discovered by Google researchers, without the update, remote attackers would apparently be able to "send a carefully crafted packet that can overflow a stack buffer and allow malicious code to be executed." The latest flaw affects several UNIX-based systems, so the bug isn't restricted to just Apple's OS X.
An Apple spokesperson told Reuters that the update process is seamless, and doesn't even require the system to be restarted to be installed. While the company has advised users to update as quickly as possible, Apple for the first time has utilized its automation OS X update system that requires no user action.
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