Apple Uses Rapid Security Response Feature For The First Time

Enlarge / Macs running macOS Ventura. reader comments

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When it announced iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and macOS Ventura at its Worldwide Developers Conference last summer, one of the features Apple introduced was something called “Rapid Security Response.” The feature is meant to enable quicker and more frequent security patches for Apple’s newest operating systems, especially for WebKit-related flaws that affect Safari and other apps that use Apple’s built-in browser engine.

Nearly a year after that WWDC and more than seven months after releasing iOS 16 in September, Apple has finally issued a Rapid Security Response update. Available for iOS and iPadOS devices running version 16.4.1 or Macs running version 13.3.1, the update adds an (a) to your OS version to denote that it’s been installed.

At this point, it’s unclear whether Apple intends to release more information about the specific bugs patched by this Security Response update; the support page linked to in the update is just a general description of Rapid Security Response updates and how they work, and Apple’s Security Updates page hasn’t been updated with more information as of this writing.

Apple has released several Rapid Security Response updates to iOS and macOS beta users before now, including during iOS 16.4’s beta phase, but it has never released one to the public until today. It’s possible that the updates released to beta users were simply testing the update mechanism rather than applying

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