Apple has something for all iPhone owners: install an available update. This applies to owners of the latest iPhone 14 all the way up to owners of an iPhone 5, which means you may need to make a phone call to an older family member.
Many people, when they get a new smartphone, pass their old one on to a parent, grandparent, or child. Depending on how old that phone is, it could pose a serious risk to your information and what’s on the phone.
iPhones 6 and earlier cannot be upgraded to new operating systems that offer regular security updates. The risks of hackers taking control of those phones are just as great now that Apple is offering a surprising update for older phones.
iOS 12.5.7 is for the iPhone 5s and iPhone 6 generation. According to Apple, the operating system at the time, iOS 12, is vulnerable to hackers who can install code and do whatever they want with it, like access contacts and other information on the phone. In fact, any phone that is not updated to at least iOS 15 is vulnerable to attacks.
It’s unusual for Apple to offer these upgrades on 9- and 10-year-old phones, so it must be important. Apple does not disclose security holes before giving users a chance to install the update. There is no point in alerting hackers. If you gave someone your old iPhone, tell them to look for the red 1 in settings and install the update as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, newer phones also have an update to install. iOS 16.3 also fixes some security flaws, and Apple urges all iPhone users to install the update when it becomes available.
There are other things included in iOS 16.3. You can now use external security keys that use a fingerprint for two-factor authentication.
There’s a new Unity wallpaper to honor Black History Month, and starting with this update, you’ll not only need to press and hold the side button and volume button to call 9-1-1, but you’ll also need to release the phone buttons to call 9-1-1 automatically.
Apple says this should reduce the number of accidental calls to 9-1-1 call centers. If you install an update, be aware that it may take some time and space. Updates can take several minutes to download, prepare, and install. It’s best to download updates when you’re on your home Wi-Fi network and when you don’t need to use your phone for a few minutes.