Wikileaks has just released another fragment of the Vault 7 documents, the ones that detail the hacking tools that the CIA has been using to break into various platforms and devices. Unimaginatively named Dark Matter, this new bundle of information reveals the American agency's tools for breaking into Apple's Macs and iPhones. In order to make it hard for third-party hackers to exploit these leaks, the details are pretty vague, but here's what we have so far:
Sonic Screwdriver is a program designed to run from a USB stick, which attacks the Macs code while the operating system is loading, making it bypass the password prompt and directly booting into a series of attack tools. An even uglier tool, DarkSeaSkies is an implant of persistent code that attacks the EFI firmware of an Apple MacBook Air, allowing the agency to use its other attack tools. It's very hard to trace and almost impossible to get rid of. As far as the iPhones are concerned, it seems that the CIA injected exploits into specific devices while the phones were being manufactured. Unfortunately, if these agencies can attack the actual manufacturing process, this means that protecting yourself from the government's control is almost impossible.
On the other side of the barricade, Apple has made a public announcement, assuring all of its clients that they're safe. The IT giant states that all the vulnerabilities exploited in the Dark Matter files had already been patched in Mac models made after 2013 and in iPhones newer than the 3G model.