Apple apologizes for privacy-invading FaceTime bug, promises delayed software update

FaceTime icon

Apple has issued an apology for the recently-discovered bug that made it possible to eavesdrop on people via FaceTime.

The company had promised that a software update would be delivered later this week, but the interim solution was to simply disable the group FaceTime feature server-side. Apple now says that the problem has been fully fixed, but a software update that re-enables the group function will not be issued until next week.

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The bug was something of a rare security slip-up for Apple, leading to an equally rare apology from the company. When the issue was brought to public attention last week, Apple faced criticism not only for the bug itself, but also for seemingly having failed to act on a bug report from 14-year-old Grant Thompson and his mother Michelle several days previously.

Apple has now not only apologized to FaceTime users, but also thanked the mother and son for their help.

In a statement given to BuzzFeed, Apple said:

We have fixed the Group FaceTime security bug on Apple's servers and we will issue a software update to re-enable the feature for users next week. We thank the Thompson family for reporting the bug. We sincerely apologize to our customers who were affected and all who were concerned about this security issue. We appreciate everyone's patience as we complete this process.

The company also said: "We want to assure our customers that as soon as our engineering team became aware of the details necessary to reproduce the bug, they quickly disabled Group FaceTime and began work on the fix. We are committed to improving the process by which we receive and escalate these reports, in order to get them to the right people as fast as possible".

Apple has not said exactly when the update will be released, so keep an eye open over the next few days.

Image credit: Nicole Lienemann / Shutterstock

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