Apple has announced Lockdown Mode, an "extreme" level of security designed for a "very small number of users who face grave, targeted threats." It’ll be available this fall. The company says it created Lockdown Mode to protect high-profile people who, because of their status or job, might be personally targeted by malware developed by the likes of NSO Group, which is behind Pegasus, or other state-backed groups. Switching on Lockdown Mode will severely restrict the functions of an iPhone, iPad or Mac to limit possible entry points for spyware.
Alongside this, Apple plans to expand its Security Bounty program. Researchers who find weaknesses in Lockdown Mode and help Apple make it more secure will be eligible for rewards of up to $2 million. Apple sued the NSO Group last year to "hold it accountable" for states that target and spy on its users.
It’s part of several security features Apple’s teeing up for its operating systems this year. iOS 16 will automatically install security fixes, while the company claims its passkeys offer increased safeguards against phishing attempts and data breaches. Even on the physical front, USB-C devices will have to ask for permission to send data in macOS Ventura.
Given all the cybersecurity issues we’ve reported on in the last few years, these are probably all good things.
— Mat Smith
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When and where to find the best deals.
With Amazon Prime Day less than a week away, Engadget will be surfacing the best tech deals we can find — both on Amazon and elsewhere — but there are some important things to know ahead of Prime Day itself, which begins at 12 AM PT on Tuesday, July 12th.
And to stay in the loop with all the best Prime day deals, try our regular new deals newsletter — don’t worry The Morning After is going nowhere. You can subscribe now to get the latest deals on our favorite consumer tech delivered to your inbox.
The redesigned Air should ship July 15th.
Good news if you’re waiting for Apple's colorful laptops: The new M2-powered, slightly redesigned MacBook Air will be available for pre-order on July 8th at 5 AM PDT/8 AM EDT. You won’t have to wait long to get your laptop after pre-order because Apple will start shipping worldwide on July 15th.
It hits PS5 and PS4 on November 9th.
Phew. The next God of War game won’t be delayed till 2023. Sony has confirmed God of War Ragnarök, the sequel to 2018's dramatic spin on the franchise, will launch on the PS5 and PS4 on November 9th. To celebrate, there’s a new trailer, with Kratos’ son stepping up to fight.
The automaker joins Tesla and GM in losing access to the subsidy after hitting a sales cap.
Toyota is the latest automaker to run out of US federal tax credits, and it will join Tesla and GM in losing access to the $7,500 subsidy. The company surpassed the qualifying sales threshold for EVs and hybrids in June, according to Bloomberg.
The government limited each carmaker to 200,000 EV tax credits, though Toyota and other companies have been lobbying to lift that cap. Toyota says losing the credit will mean its EVs are more expensive for consumers, which will slow the transition from combustion-engine cars to EVs.
NASA regains communications with its wayward CAPSTONE satellite
The lunar spacecraft had gone dark for nearly a full day.
Following the lunar satellite's successful launch from Rocket Lab's site July 4th, ground control lost contact with the spacecraft shortly after it escaped Earth's gravity. Yesterday, after nearly a full day in the dark, NASA announced its engineers managed to reconnect to the petite 55-pound satellite.