Update Now: Apple Releases Major iOS, macOS Security Patches

Apple yesterday (Jan. 22) released software updates for all of its operating systems, and while there aren't any new features, each updates fixes a fistful of security flaws. If you want to keep your iPhone, MacBook, Apple Watch or Apple TV safe and healthy, we'd recommend installing your updates today.

Studio Monkey / Shutterstock

Studio Monkey / Shutterstock

Included in each update is a fix for a flaw in Apple's sandbox restrictions, which prevent apps from affecting each other. The flaw could be exploited by a malicious app to steal data from another app, and even the best Mac antivirus software might not be able to stop it.

iOS 12.1.3

Ten of the fixes in iOS 12.1.3, available for iPhones and iPads, protect devices against arbitrary code execution, preventing malcontents from taking control of your phone. While three of those solutions protect Safari's WebKit rendering engine, these flaws are also fixed in iOS' Bluetooth implementation and the FaceTime app.

How to Update iPhones and iPads

Open Settings, tap General, tap Software Update and tap Download and Install. Expect your phone to spend a brief amount of time in update limbo, so don't run this when you're expecting important calls.

MORE: Best Antivirus Software

macOS 10.14.3

Apple is delivering security updates to macOS Mojave users with version 10.14.3 and to systems running macOS High Sierra and Sierra in the form of Security Update 2019-001. These updates also patch the desktop and laptop platform against arbitrary-code-execution attacks, including multiple flaws that could give attackers high-level privileges at both the system and the even-deeper kernel level.

How to Update Macs

If you're running Mojave, click the Apple logo in the top left corner, select System Preferences, click Software Update and click Update Now. Those on Sierra or High Sierra will also click the Apple logo, but then select App Store and click Updates.

watchOS 5.1.3 and tvOS 12.1.2

Apple Watch and Apple TV don't have stand-alone web browsers, but watchOS 5.1.3 and tvOS 12.1.2 still get the WebKit patches to protect against executable code, plus other fixes, because they share the underlying technologies of Apple's bigger platforms.

How to Update Apple Watch

Open the Watch app on your iPhone, scroll to General, tap Software Update and run the available update.

How to Update Apple TV

Open the Settings app on the Apple TV, select System, select Software Updates, select Update Software and click Update Now.

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.