Teen had found FaceTime bug, but Apple ignored it

FaceTime’s major bug, whose existence was revealed on Monday, was discovered by an Arizona teenager nine days ago. His mother’s repeated attempts to inform Apple, however, remained unanswered.

The bug in question allowed to hear and sometimes even to see an interlocutor who had not dropped by creating a group conversation (three people and more).

Grant Thompson, 14, was trying to contact his friends for a video game session when he realized he could hear a friend who did not answer the call.

The youth immediately tried to replicate the bug successfully. As soon as he could confirm that it was a real bug, Grant Thompson reported it to his mother, who then wanted to warn Apple.

Many attempts

According to what she told CNN, Michele Thompson wrote to the company by e-mail, in addition to calling her, writing to CEO Tim Cook on Twitter and even faxing a letter with the letterhead from his law firm.

On January 20, she also publicly stated on Twitter that her son had discovered a major security breach, while taking care not to give details to exploit it. This message contained the Apple Technical Support ID.

Ms. Thompson said she wanted to make sure this bug did not fall into the wrong hands.

Like many other tech companies, Apple has a bug bounty program. Through this, Apple offers rewards of up to $200,000 to people who report vulnerabilities confidentially.

To report a security breach, however, the public must go through the developer site, which is little known to the majority of people.

Ms. Thompson claims that Apple never responded to her attempts to contact the company.

A late reaction

Other people discovered the FaceTime bug a few days after Grant Thompson and its existence was revealed to the general public Monday in videos posted on Twitter.

Only then did Apple react by blocking the app’s group call feature. The company plans to roll out an update to fix the situation by next week.

With information from CNN and Engadget

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