Apple also provided updates for older operating system versions on Monday evening. In addition to macOS 13.2 and iOS 16.3, updates for macOS 11 (Big Sur), 12 (Monterey) as well as iOS 12, iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 are now available. These each provide security fixes for some serious gaps. A new Safari version 16.3 is also available.
macOS Monterey now reaches version 12.6.3. It plugs more than a dozen security holes. This affects simple routines such as curl, but also the kernel, AppleMobileFileIntegrity, the graphics drivers from Intel, DiskAbitration and dcerpc, PackageKit, the Wettet app, Screen Time, the Windows Installer and – outside of Safari – the WebKit web engine. Apple does not elaborate on a kernel bug. At least five of the bugs allow execution of malicious code, often with kernel privileges.
macOS Big Sur reaches version 11.7.3. The update addresses a total of seven bug areas, including curl, AppleMobileFileIntegrity, dcerpc, PackageKit, and WebKit. It remains unclear whether the other gaps closed in Monterey simply do not exist here. In any case, Apple no longer fixes all bugs in old systems, as the company recently admitted – only the latest macOS is fully patched.
Safari and updates for old mobile systems
Monterey and Big Sur will continue to receive a separately downloadable update to Apple’s default browser, Safari. The software now reaches version 16.3. Nothing was initially known about new functions, but Apple is filling several gaps in WebKit. One of them will also be corrected in parallel with Safari with macOS 11.7.3 or 12.6.3 (see above) – apparently Apple sees it as so dangerous that it should be closed both ways, including for people who do not update Safari individually (want).
Apple continues to maintain older versions of iOS and iPadOS, albeit with very urgent security fixes. iOS 15.7.3 or iPadOS 15.7.4 and iOS 12.5.7 are now available for download here. iOS 15 gets fixes for the Kernel, Mail Exchange, Maps and Screen Time, iOS 12 gets a single fix for a WebKit issue. However, it is still wise to update to iOS or iPadOS 16 to really get all the patches – but this may not be possible with older devices.
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