Flaws in the Mail and Safari applications bundled with the iPhone leave users of the device at greater risk of phishing attacks.
A URL-spoofing vulnerability means that a dodgy domain pointed to by a specially crafted URL can appear to be that of a trusted brand when viewed through the iPhone's mail or Safari browser applications.
Mail and Safari on version 1.1.4 and 2.0 of the iPhone firmware are affected by this vulnerability. Earlier versions may also be buggy. , Security researcher Aviv Raff, who found the flaw, is withholding technical details pending the release of patches from Apple.
iPhone users are advised to enter the addresses of sites they wish to visit manually instead of clicking on links contained in email. This is good advice generally but all the more important while there is no patch available.
The way the vulnerability affects Mail also leaves iPhone users more likely to receive spam, according to Raff, who reports that the consumer electronics giant has privately acknowledged the Mail vulnerability. Apple is still reportedly investigating the Safari-on-iPhone bug.
Raff is a prominent researcher in the arena of client side vulnerabilities, and has been credited in recent months with discovering or expanding research on flaws in Internet Explorer, Skype and Safari. ®