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Apple Watch Walkie Talkie feature disabled as it could eavesdrop on you

By Anton D. Nagy July 11, 2019, 8:00 am
Apple Watch Walkie Talkie

If you’re not familiar with the Walkie Talkie feature of the Apple Watch, it allows users who have accepted each other’s invitations to chat via “push to talk”, in a walkie-talkie fashion. Seems like Apple has disabled this feature on the Apple Watch due to a vulnerability which could allow someone to eavesdrop on you. Apple had the below to say:

We were just made aware of a vulnerability related to the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch and have disabled the function as we quickly fix the issue. We apologize to our customers for the inconvenience and will restore the functionality as soon as possible. Although we are not aware of any use of the vulnerability against a customer and specific conditions and sequences of events are required to exploit it, we take the security and privacy of our customers extremely seriously. We concluded that disabling the app was the right course of action as this bug could allow someone to listen through another customer’s iPhone without consent.  We apologize again for this issue and the inconvenience.

Apple mentioned that it was alerted via a vulnerability report portal, and that it has no knowledge on victims or evidence that it was exploited in the wild. Apple has been in the middle of a similar FaceTime vulnerability, and recently Apple sent out an update to remove a feature of the Zoom conference app enabled similar privacy concerns.



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