After warning you a couple of weeks back about a weird Wi-Fi network that will permanently disable your iPhone’s Wi-Fi connection, there’s another one. Twitter user Carl Schou discovered that the network %secretclub%power will completely annihilate your iPhone’s ability to connect to Wi-Fi.
This new network is something of a variation on the original explosive Service Set Identifier (SSID). The original network was a seeming string of letters and the percent symbol—%p%s%s%s%s%n—but as you can see in the new network, there’s a common denominator: %p and %s. It’s unclear if they both need to be used, but one or both of those couplets are seemingly the culprits and it doesn’t seem to matter where they are in the SSID. So stay away from them.
Like the original network, Schou says connecting to %secretclub%power completely disabled his iPhone’s Wi-Fi even after restarting and resetting network settings. He was able to restore network functionality only by manually editing an iPhone backup and “removing malicious entries” from the known networks .plist. He’s also reached out to Apple’s security team about the issue.
As always, it’s never a good idea to connect to unfamiliar Wi-Fi networks, but it’s also a good idea to avoid using %s and %p when naming your SSID.
Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He's still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.