Facetime bug exposes your microphone’s audio before you answer the call

A major bug has been discovered in Apple’s Facetime app that allows anyone who initiates a call, to listen in on the person they are calling.

[Update 1:] Apple released a statement in which it says that a fix for this bug will be “released in a software update later this week.”
[Update 2:] Apple has disabled Group Facetime until the bug can be fixed.

On Monday, Twitter users started sharing information about the bug that affects the Apple Group Facetime feature that Apple introduced with iOS 12.1 in October last year. The bug can be exploited by adding yourself as another user to the Group Facetime call you have initiated. This action tricks Facetime into thinking the call is active and you’ll be able to hear everything picked up by their iPhone’s mic. Apple users have been urged to disable Facetime until Apple releases a fix.

Even more worrying is that this bug also has the potential to share your camera’s feed, without you knowing it. This only happens when the person receiving the call presses the power button to mute or cancel the incoming Facetime call. At this point, the audio will be muted but the camera will be visible to the caller.

According to Twitter user @MGT7500, his 14-year-old son first discovered the exploit late in January and submitted it to Apple’s support.

We recommend all iPhone users to turn off Facetime until Apple has issued a software patch. You can access this in your phone’s Settings menu. For good measure, we recommend you disable Facetime on your other Apple devices too.

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