The latest tech stories from around the world...

Update Your IPhone Right Now To Fix 2 Apple Zero Days

Apple says the patches fix a memory corruption that allowed an app to execute arbitrary code and a WebKit vulnerability that enabled malicious code execution through web content. The attacks have been seen only on devices running versions of iOS released before iOS 15.7, according to the company. Even if you’re an unlikely target for spyware, now’s a good time to update your iPhone.

This week, an alarming investigation by NBC News found that Discord, a social media popular with gamers, has become a popular venue for child sexual exploitation. NBC News identified 35 cases over the past six years in which adults have faced charges of kidnapping, grooming, or sexual assault that were allegedly facilitated by Discord. Nearly half of these cases resulted in guilty pleas or verdicts, while many others are still under investigation.

NBC News’ review of cases is likely a vast undercount, the report says, as these numbers represent only reported cases where charges were brought. Victims generally face significant challenges when it comes to reporting, investigations, and prosecution. Stephen Sauer, the director of the tip line at the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, told NBC News, “What we see is only the tip of the iceberg.”

According to experts interviewed by NBC News, while online child exploitation is not exclusive to Discord, the platform’s decentralized moderation system and its young user base have likely made it an appealing environment for those seeking to exploit children.

The investigation comes as a Washington Post report found that thousands of AI-generated child sexual abuse images have been found on forums across the dark web.

According to The Wall Street Journal, US officials have been monitoring the activities of employees working for Chinese telecom companies Huawei Technologies and ZTE at suspected spy facilities in Cuba. The news comes amid a push to restrict the use of Huawei and ZTE mobile infrastructure across the West.

Earlier this month, the Journal reported that China has been operating a spy base in Cuba since at least 2019 and that the two countries jointly maintain four additional eavesdropping stations on the island. Officials from the Biden administration caution that these facilities could potentially intercept electronic signals from US military bases.

According to representative Mike Gallagher, the chairman of the US House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party, Huawei and ZTE have had regular business presence in Cuba while working to modernize the island’s internet infrastructure. In a letter Gallagher sent to director of national intelligence Avril Haines, which the Journal viewed, Gallagher wrote that any enhancement of China’s intelligence capabilities in Cuba “is likely” to be aided by Chinese telecommunications companies.

In a statement, Huawei described the report as “groundless accusations” and emphasized its commitment to full compliance with applicable laws and regulations in the regions they operate. Similarly, ZTE dismissed the Journal’s reporting as “baseless.”

The recent Reddit protest over changes to its business that threaten third-party apps was messy enough without hackers getting involved. The ransomware gang BlackCat is threatening to release some 80 GB of data that the company says was stolen earlier this year through a “highly targeted” phishing attack.

Reddit says it doesn’t believe the hackers stole user data like passwords, but BlackCat says the files contain “confidential” information. The group is demanding Reddit pay $4.5 million and cancel its plans to charge app developers exorbitant fees for access to its application programming interface, or API. Otherwise the group says, it will release the data ahead of the company’s planned IPO.