New documents from WikiLeaks reveal that a CIA program hacks Apple's iPhones and Mac computers using techniques that can't be disabled by resetting the devices.
According to the security experts, although the exploits are feasible, they don't pose much threat to typical users. Many of the tricks such as the iPhone hack involving the 3G model from 2008, are older. Typically, the devices also needs to be accessed physically in these techniques, which the CIA would only do for targeted individuals, not a wider population.
"The most notable part of this latest WikiLeaks release is that it shows the CIA doing exactly what we pay them to - exploit specific targets with limited attacks to support our national interests," commented Rich Mogull, CEO of the security research firm Securosis.
As of now, Apple has not responded yet. While the CIA has not confirmed if the report is authentic, it has earlier said that it complies with a legal prohibition against electronic surveillance "targeting individuals here at home, including our fellow Americans."
The most recent disclosures consist of only 12 documents, all of which involve Apple products. The documents demonstrate the techniques used by CIA for rewriting device's firmware in a such a way that it would keep the hacker's access even after a phone or computer is reset.
The WikiLeaks had also published thousands of alleged CIA documents a couple of weeks back. It described the hacking tools the government allegedly use to break into computers, cell phones, and even smart TVs of companies such as Google, Apple, Microsoft and Samsung.