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Have an iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch? You need to update it right now

iPhone 14 Pro Max against a red background.
Prakhar Khanna / Digital Trends

If you own an Apple product — be in the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, or a Mac — you should update it immediately. Why? Apple has begun rolling out updates to all of its devices with fixes for a serious security vulnerability.

The security vulnerability is known as CVE-2023-32434, and it has to do with the kernel privileges of Apple devices. Per Apple’s website, the vulnerability allows third-party apps to “execute arbitrary code.” In other words, if a bad actor knows how to exploit this vulnerability, they could potentially gain access to your Apple device and wreck havoc.

The bad news? That vulnerability affects iPhones, iPads, Apple Watches, and Macs. The good news? An update is available now that patches the CVE-2023-32434 vulnerability so you don’t have to worry about it.

The original iPad wallpaper in iPadOS 17.
Joe Maring/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

If you have an iPhone or iPad, open the Settings app, select General > Software Update, and you should see an update available for iOS 16.5.1 or iPadOS 16.5.1, respectively. If you have an Apple Watch, open the Watch app, select General > Software Update, and you should see an update for watchOS 9.5.2. For Mac users, open the Settings app, click General > Software Update, and you’ll see an update for macOS 13.4.1.

These updates also address another security vulnerability for iPhones, iPads, and Macs — specifically, a WebKit-related one that could process “maliciously crafted web content” and “lead to arbitrary code execution.”

Although there’s not much else to talk about beyond these security fixes, we’re expecting a lot more from Apple’s software teams later this year. Apple is currently developing the next major software updates for all of its platforms — including iOS 17, iPadOS 17, watchOS 10, and macOS 14 Sonoma. Developer betas for all of those are available now, and if you’re interested, you can download them right now for yourself using one of our guides:

However, seeing how those big software updates are all still in the “developer beta” stage, we recommend that most people wait until the software officially launches later this fall — or at least until public betas are available later this summer.

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Joe Maring
Section Editor, Mobile
Joe Maring is the Section Editor for Digital Trends' Mobile team, leading the site's coverage for all things smartphones…
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