THE AirDrop a very cool technology. It is true that every now and then it still fails (most of the time just when you need to transfer something urgently), but let's agree that it is priceless when you can transfer that sea of photos or that heavy video in a few seconds.
For Mark Dowd, an Australian security researcher, discovered a vulnerability by which it is possible to install a malicious application on iPads, iPhones, iPods touch and / or even Macs without the user suspecting anything. This is because, once the feature is activated, the victim does not even have to accept the transfer of the file that was sent to her.
The video below shows how everything works (on iOS):
Briefly, as informed by the The Mac Security Blog, it is possible to circumvent traditional forms of application distribution (App Store and ad hoc) and install a malicious app that can, as in the case shown by Dowd, even replace a native iOS app. Or worse: spy on your conversations, steal sensitive data, etc.
The problem affects iOS 7/8 and luckily it has already been fixed (albeit partially) in iOS 9 yet another reason for you to update your iGadget soon. On the Mac, however, we will have to wait for the official release of OS X El Capitan 10.11, which will happen on September 30th.
If you don't want to upgrade to iOS 9 now, there are two ways to protect yourself from this problem: disable the Control Center on the Lock Screen (by going to Control Center Settings) and, if you keep AirDrop enabled, choose the option that allows transfers of contacts only (same solution for those on OS X).