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Apple disables Walkie-Talkie app on Apple Watch after finding bug

ByRebecca Tuffin

Apple has disabled the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch after detecting a bug which could have allowed Kent users of the app to eavesdrop on others.

The global technology company has issued a statement saying the app has been disabled while the glitch is fixed.

Walkie-Talkie will remain installed on the watches but will not be functional until it is made safe again.

Apple has disabled the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch after detecting a bug
Apple has disabled the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch after detecting a bug

An Apple spokesman told TechCrunch: "We have been made aware of a vulnerability related to the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch and have disabled the function as we quickly fix the issue.

"We apologise to our customers for the inconvenience and will restore the functionality as soon as possible.

"Although we are not aware of any use of the vulnerability against a customer and specific conditions and sequences of events are required to exploit it, we take the security and privacy of our customers extremely seriously.

"We concluded that disabling the app was the right course of action as this bug could allow someone to listen through another customer’s iPhone without consent.

"We apologise again for this issue and the inconvenience."

Walkie-Talkie was released to owners of the Apple Watch last year and allows them to talk directly with other users just by speaking into their wrist.

The fault is reminiscent of a serious Group FaceTime bug discovered early this year which could allow callers to hear the recipient without the call being accepted.

Apple disabled Group FaceTime once the issue was discovered, creating an emergency bug fix a week and a half later as part of iOS 12.1.4.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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