Grant Thompson, a 14-year old teenager from Arizona created quite a storm earlier this month after he reported a major security vulnerability in the Apple FaceTime feature that allowed users to eavesdrop on conversations over group call of a user who hadn’t even picked the call.
Apple has now released an essential update to fix the FaceTime bug. What’s interesting to note here is that Apple has quietly stripped out the ability to make Group FaceTime Calls instead of making a public acceptance of the bug.
The tech firm pushed an update to fix the Group FaceTime security problem which let people eavesdrop on each other. Company has rather introduced this new limitation to its FaceTime feature in iOS 12.1.4. A MacRumors forum first noticed that two people on a FaceTime call cannot add the third person. The company has grayed out the button.
Apple has confirmed the limitation in a tweet response to a frustrated user. The tweet from Companu Support confirms that Apple has temporarily disabled the feature.
The unannounced update makes a big difference to FaceTime user experience. iOS users can no longer use the service to add friends and family members. The subtitle removal of the feature makes a big difference to iPhone users. In order to initiate a Group FaceTime call, users have to start a conversation with two or more people.
The FaceTime bug enabled others to spy on you without your permission. A person could initiate a Group FaceTime Call and then add themselves to the call again to force a Group FaceTime connection.
The bug allowed the person to hear the audio even if you did not answer the call. As soon as Apple acknowledged the bug, the Group FaceTime server went offline. Apple will have a permanent fix to this problem in iOS 12.2 update.