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Apple warns iPhone users in India and 97 other countries of “mercenary spyware attacks”: Here’s what the warning message says

Apple has issued warnings to some iPhone users in India and 97 other countries about possible “mercenary spyware attacks” that could compromise their devices. This marks the second such notification campaign by the tech giant this year, following a similar alert sent to users in 92 nations in April.

What Apple’s warning message to iPhone users says

“Apple detected that you are being targeted by a mercenary spyware attack that is trying to remotely compromise the iPhone associated with your Apple ID -xxx-,” the warning read.
The company cautioned that these sophisticated attacks likely target specific individuals due to their identity or occupation. The alert urged recipients to take the warning seriously.
“This attack is likely targeting you specifically because of who you are or what you do. Although it’s never possible to achieve absolute certainty when detecting such attacks, Apple has high confidence in this warning — please take it seriously,” Apple added in the text.
Since 2021, Apple has been sending these threat notifications to users in over 150 countries. The latest warnings represent a continuation of the company’s efforts to protect its customers from highly advanced cyber threats.

What are “mercenary spyware attacks” as per Apple

Apple described these incidents as “mercenary spyware attacks,” a shift from the previously used term “state-sponsored” attacks. The company highlighted that such attacks, like those using the Pegasus spyware developed by NSO Group, are “exceptionally rare and vastly more sophisticated than regular cybercriminal activity or consumer malware.”
In its communication, Apple stressed the sensitive nature of its threat identification methods, noting that revealing additional details could potentially aid attackers in evading future detection. The company relies solely on internal threat intelligence and investigations to detect these attacks.
Apple advises affected users to take immediate action to secure their devices and accounts.

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