A new iOS 16.3 update adds Apple ID security keys, HomePod support, and fixes a dozen potential security loopholes.

Apple has issued the 16.3 version of iOS 16, which bolsters security for your Apple ID, fixes a handful of other issues, and patches several security loopholes. It also includes 2nd Gen HomePod support and adds a new Unity wallpaper option in honor of Black History Month.

Inspecting the new Apple iPhone XR during an Apple special event

Security Keys for Apple ID claim to offer better protection for your account by requiring a physical security key (in addition to 2FA) whenever you sign into a new device. If it functions as advertised, it should make it significantly more difficult for anyone to hijack your Apple account remotely.

iOS 16.3 also makes Emergency SOS calls harder to activate accidentally—now you have to hold the side button, along with the up or down buttons, then release. Other fixes include a Freeform issue with some drawn lines not appearing in shared boards, wallpapers disappearing on the lock screen, and lines appearing on-screen during wakeup. Problems with inaccurate Home app status in the widget and Siri improperly handling music and CarPlay requests have also been addressed.

Additionally, several potential operating system exploits that could be used to gain primary user privileges have been closed. WebKit processes that left the door open for running code against your wishes (or knowledge) have also been cleaned up. And the AppleMobileFileIntegrity kernel extension (necessary for validating libraries and signing code) can no longer be exploited to access sensitive data.

The iOS 16.3 update is available now on all iPhone models that are compatible with iOS 16 (i.e., the iPhone 8 or 2nd Gen SE and newer). If automatic updates are turned on, your phone will take care of the process. Otherwise, you can manually update through Settings.

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