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Apple warns politicians of “state-sponsored attack” on their iPhones. Here’s what it has said


Several Indian politicians on Tuesday received a text and email from Apple, warning them about”state-sponsored attackers” who were potentially remotely trying to compromise the iPhones associated with their IDs.

After a flurry of news reports and posts on social media, Apple sprung into action and issued a statement.

“Apple does not attribute the threat notifications to any specific state-sponsored attacker. State-sponsored attackers are very well-funded and sophisticated, and their attacks evolve over time. Detecting such attacks relies on threat intelligence signals that are often imperfect and incomplete”, the statement read.

“It’s possible that some Apple threat notifications may be false alarms, or that some attacks are not detected. We are unable to provide information about what causes us to issue threat notifications, as that may help state-sponsored attackers adapt their behavior to evade detection in the future”, the Apple statement added.

The opposition leaders including Congress’s Shashi Tharoor and Pawan Khera, Shiv Sena’s Priyanka Chaturvedi, Trinamool Congress’s Mahua Moitra, and Aam Aadmi Party’s Raghav Chadha reportedly received the threat message from the iPhone maker.

As per a screenshot shared by Tharoor on X, Apple warned the Congress leader that “If your device is compromised by a state-sponsored attacker, they may be able to remotely access your sensitive data, communications, or even the camera and microphone”.

It cautioned him to take the warning seriously, even though it could possibly be a false alarm.

Apple further recommended him to update the iPhone to the latest software version, iOS 17.1.

We urge you to always update to the latest software as soon as it’s available, as it contains the latest security protections. To update go to Settings >> General >> Software.

– Enable Lockdown Mode on your iPhone in Settings > Privacy & Security > Lockdown Mode.

“This feature was designed specifically to help protect users like you who are individually targeted by some of the most advanced digital threats. When Lockdown Mode is enabled, certain apps, websites, and features are limited for security, and some experiences might not be available at all. For more details, look up Apple support article HT212650 on” it said.

The company also advised the leader to update all the Apple devices and enable Lockdown Mode on each Mac and iPad device he uses.

Apple said that some state-sponsored attacks “require no interaction from you, and others rely on tricking you into clicking a malicious link or opening an attachment in an email, SMS, or other message”.

“These attempts can be quite convincing, ranging from fake package tracking updates to custom-crafted, emotional appeals claiming a named family member is in danger. Be cautious with all links you receive, and don’t open any links or attachments from and will likely try to attack you through other channels, devices, and accounts not associated with Apple,” it said.

If you have received a similar text or email, you can verify if it is genuine or not by signing into

If Apple sends you a threat notification, it will be clearly visible at the top of the page after you sign in.