Categories: News

SSID Name Discovered Capable of Disabling Apple iOS Wifi

How creative are you with the name of your home network’s SSID? Invariably I tend to use ‘Tin Foil Hat Time’ or ‘Secret Nuclear Bunker’, but it can change depending on the mood I’m in. The short version is, most of the time, if you see a custom SSID network name, you generally just tend to presume that it’s a home user with a sense of humour. Following a report via Mashable, however, it has been found that a very particular SSID can have a very nasty effect on Apple iOS products, namely, that it can actually completely lock out the device’s Wifi capabilities!

SSID Found to Lock Apple iOS Wifi!

At this point, I come to something of a moral dilemma. I can tell you this specific SSID code so that those of you with Apple iPhone’s can attempt to avoid it, but I do so at the risk of some of the more mischievous among you with Android devices (who aren’t affected by this bug) attempting to troll your neighbours with the tasty bait prospect of some free Wifi. – I’m am, however, going to take the risk though that you will not do this.

So, the code, it’s “%p%s%s%s%s%n”.

Although we do not suggest you try this at home, many reports are now confirming that if an Apple iOS device attempts to connect to a network with that SSID name, it will completely shut down the device’s capabilities of obtaining ANY sort of Wifi connection.

A Workaround of Sorts

The main crux of the issue appears to be found in the fact that with the SSID starting with a ‘%’, Apple devices can mistake this for a piece of code and, with this particular network name, it seems that the stars have aligned enough to actually form an executable string that, likely through accident rather than design, completely shutdowns the products Wifi capabilities.

The news from the community regarding fixing this bug has so far been more than a little mixed. While pretty much all users confirm that attempting to connect to that SSID name does indeed completely disable the Apple device’s Wifi capabilities, some have said that resetting the network setting will likely get things back to normal. Perhaps worrying though, this doesn’t appear to apply to everyone, with many claiming that a ‘factory reset’ has been necessary to get their iPhone back to normal, and some even go as far to say that even that hasn’t worked!

While Apple is undoubtedly working hard to provide an update with a permanent fix for this issue, the bottom line is that if you encounter this networking name with an Apple device in your hand, you are strongly advised to resist the temptation to connect to it!

What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!

Mike Sanders

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