A new bug in the iPhone messaging app allows to crash an iPhone via a text message.
This is a weird bug that can be used to annoy iPhone users quite a bit. A rather unusual line of text can crash the iPhone when received in iMessage. The discovery was first shared on Reddit. This text is not something users would type by accident. If your iPhone shuts down after receiving a text message, you have been targeted.
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9to5Mac reports that this is not the first time such text bug hits iOS. In 2013 a string of arabic characters crashed not only iOS but also OS X. The new text message bug is again containing Arabic characters. The crash actually happens when a notification banner of a new message is displayed containing the malicious text.
Many have already fallen victim to the malicious text message based on many Tweets shared on Twitter reporting the problem.
Until Apple fixes this text message bug, users can switch off notification banners to prevent getting targeted by the turn off iPhone text message. The settings for banner notifications can be found under Settings/Notifications/Messages on the iPhone.
Update: Apple issues Support Document for iPhone Off Text Message Bug.
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Users who have already been targeted need to get the message cleared from the top of the list by sending a new one. Options to send an iMessage including using Siri or the Note app. After the new message is sent the iMessage app is not crashing again.