There's a new malicious link that can crash or hang Messages and Safari

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Yet another "text bomb" has surfaced, this time in the form of a website that can sometimes cause system crashes or hangups when received through Apple's Messages app on iOS and macOS.

The website seems to exploit a bug or a non-optimized rendering process for OpenGraph page titles by creating an excessively long tag. When Messages attempts to render a preview of the link, the app then crashes or hangs - and occasionally takes the operating system with it.

Users have little choice but to delete the conversation in which they received the link and start over.

Messages gets top billing, but our testing also found Safari and Chrome on macOS to be somewhat vulnerable. Even Chrome's developer tools were not immune.

Since this exploit relies on automatic link previews, typical security advice - don't click on random links - doesn't apply. Until Apple releases a fix, users will simply have to hope their friends are nice people.


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