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A new Apple security feature helps users discover if someone is secretly tracking them via Bluetooth, one of many critical updates released as part of iOS 17.5 Monday.

The new operating system update for the company’s iPhone also introduced more word games to Apple News+, making it more like a traditional newspaper, as well as robust security improvements to Apple’s Maps, Notes and Find My apps.

The update came alongside a sweeping series of updates to nearly all of Apple’s hardware operating systems, from macOS Sonoma 14.5 on its desktop and laptop computers, to tvOS 17.5 for its Apple TV boxes.

But iPhone’s iOS 17.5 protects one of the most critical systems that customers will want to update if they want to limit their exposure to clandestine spying risks.

iOS 17.5’s new Cross-Platform Tracking Protection notifications will now alert users ‘if a compatible Bluetooth tracker they do not own is moving with them, regardless of what operating system the device is paired with,’ according to the company.

Update your iPhone NOW! Apple releases iOS update that fixes 15 security issues – and five other new features

A new Apple security feature helps users discover if someone is secretly tracking them via Bluetooth, one of many critical updates released as part of iOS 17.5 this Monday 

The new operating system update for the company's iPhone also introduces more word games to Apple News+ - making it more like a traditional newspaper - as well as robust security improvements to Apple's Maps, Notes and Voice Control apps

The new operating system update for the company’s iPhone also introduces more word games to Apple News+ – making it more like a traditional newspaper – as well as robust security improvements to Apple’s Maps, Notes and Voice Control apps

Previously, Apple had already issued updated protections to prevent its AirTag system — which is designed to help users find lost items like car keys — from being abused for so-called AirTag stalking.

The new Cross-Platform Tracking Protection promises to implement similar safeguards to a wide variety of devices, including those paired to non-Apple phones.

Apple News+ also saw a bevy of new features, including the new word game Quartiles, which joins the app’s Crossword and Mini Crossword games: all part of the Cupertino-based tech giant’s battle to wrest gamers away from major publications like the New York Times, owners of the popular games Wordle, Spelling Bee and more.

The news app will now also boast a new ‘Offline Mode’ for those hoping to catch up on the day’s top stories without the benefit of consistent internet access.

The new iOS update also promises a brand new series of ‘Pride Radiance’ wallpaper art to celebrate LGBTQ+ communities, as detailed on Apple’s page for the update.

But the critical new features are, first and foremost, iOS 17.5’s new security updates, of which there were 15 in total. Here are the three most important.

One fix patched up a vulnerability that had previously allowed malware access to a user’s location via the Find My app.  

Another had left sensitive location information on Apple Maps exposed to any malicious app designed to interact with the navigation software. 

And a third would have helped hackers access the Notes app from an iPhone user’s lock screen, if a thief had gained physical access to the device.

‘If you believe that you’ve discovered a security or privacy vulnerability in an Apple product,’ Apple advised with its new release, ‘learn how to submit your research.’

The company then linked to it’s security or privacy reporting page



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