We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
bad characters

There's an iOS bug that lets you crash other iPhones with a single text

In some cases, the bug can force an iPhone to reboot.

THERE’S A NASTY new iPhone bug doing the rounds: It’s a string of characters that, when sent in a message, crashes the recipient’s phone.

We first heard about the issue on 9to5Mac, and it apparently affects only iPhone-to-iPhone communication. After receiving a text with the particular string of characters, Messages will reportedly crash repeatedly. It can also force iPhones to reboot in some circumstances.

Here’s the text that is reportedly causing the bug:

effective. Power لُلُصّبُلُلصّبُررً ॣ ॣh ॣ ॣ 冗

For what it’s worth, we’ve tried to replicate the bug and can’t manage it – suggesting that it doesn’t necessarily affect all iPhones. But comments on social media show that it’s definitely for an issue for many:

On Reddit, one user theorises that it’s caused by a failure to render unicode properly — “[causing] messages to take up a lot more memory than normal, leading to iOS killing the largest process,” and thus crashing.

And as 9to5Mac notes, this isn’t the first time this has happened. In 2013, the tech blog reported on how certain Arabic characters could cause issues in both iOS 6 and OS X 10.8.

If you’ve been affected, Forbes has a suggestion on how to fix the issue and let you reopen Messages: Either “have the person who pranked you send another message,” or “send yourself a message through Siri or your Mac.”

Apple told Business Insider it had no comment at this time.

- Rob Price

Read: Is your phone overheating regularly? Here’s how you can fix it >

Read: Why this Irish company’s plans for global expansion is leaving the US for last >

Published with permission from
Business Insider
Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.