A flaw found in iOS
which retains the thumbnails of pictures even after the original is deleted - and can "resurrect" those thumbnails when users save a transparent image to the Camera Roll - remains uncorrected in the latest release, today's 7.0.4 update
. An analysis shows that thumbnails are retained in the Photo Data folder even when the original pictures are deleted. The thumbnails, but not the originals, may again become visible in the Photos app if a transparent PNG format image is also saved to Photos.
Posts in Apple's support forums show that that the problem has existed for nearly two years, and was first reported in association with iOS 5.0, reports AppleInsider
. While erasing an iPhone will solve the problem for older photos, the flaw continues to exist and thus could "resurrect" future thumbnails of deleted photos. The issue could be construed as a potential security issue, since thumbnails of deleted photos could be preserved by others with access to the iOS device.
Apple has since been informed of the issue. However, as the likelihood of the thumbnails being retrieved by anyone other than the user is low, the company make take some time to fix the issue.