For security reasons, is is really necessary to restart iOS devices weekly?

I would like to understand if this warning is just hype, or yet another procedure to add to my schedule.

thanks in advance for your time and help

NSA issues warning to iPhone and Android users — do this to stop hackers | Tom’s Guide

The article does not have a reference to the original source NSA statement, just reports of it having been made.

Without an original source I do not give it any credibility personally.

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thank you very much for the info and your didactic explanation which I will keep in mind (no reference → no credibility)

I believe it was because some of the exploits used by Pegasus were transient and couldn’t survive a restart. As probably 99.99% of us aren’t at risk of that then it does seem a bit overkill.

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The article mentioned NSA’s “Mobile Device Best Practices” security guide as the source document. See NSA’s list of guidance documents for telework and end user security for more info.

Edited to add:

This is an interesting example of how “news content” is generated in the current era. The source document was released to the public in October 2020. It has been mentioned occasionally in various news articles in the years since then without drawing much attention, but suddenly last week the story gained traction as a bunch of news providers began covering it as if it were urgent and new.

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From very PERSONAL experience, restarting all of my iOS devices at a particular point in time late last year AND powering down my wi-fi router for at least 10 sec seem to cause all of the problems we were seeing on our iOS devices to just, melt away!. I got religion. Sunday mornings, while we are having breakfast, this dance is begun. (And yes, I knew about the NSA recommendations but did not think they applied to me, until they did.)

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Of course, you have no way of knowing if your problems are due to governments and corporations spying on you (what the NSA thinks) vs. good old fashioned buggy software.

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Let’s go to a generative AI and see what it says…

https://www.perplexity.ai/search/For-security-reasons-Yjy9khgpSy.io5u.HP86dw

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a very useful and educational suggestion. Thank you very much !

The Perplexity answer is a good example of how generative AI can synthesize misleading information, but at least it provides links to its “supporting” information, so you can still judge its credibility.

For example, it says that “Apple does not recommend or provide guidance to regularly restart iOS devices for security or performance. Restarting is only advised when troubleshooting specific issues.” That may or may not be true, but the source of the information cited by the AI is not Apple itself, but instead is an assertion by non-Apple authors on a discussion thread hosted in Apple’s discussion forums.

Again, the assertion may or may not be true, but the Perplexity AI converts unvetted comments in a low-credibility forum into a statement by Apple without actual evidence.

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In my view, any information found via search engines, blogs, social media, and generative AIs should be viewed critically or even skeptically. This has long been the case, going back to when online content expanded beyond academics posting with their colleagues on USENET, I’d say, because “on the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog,” as the old saying goes.

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