Of all the weird things that can happen to your iOS device, the latest is a relatively benign situation in which a string of text is sent to the phone...and it causes the phone to crash.
The phone will reboot if the particular nonsensical text string is received while the phone is locked.
Data won't be stolen; nobody will gain remote control of your device (yet); but heck, who wouldn't be very annoyed that their phone crashes? And this is going on all over the world. The text characters can also be sent from any device. Apple says it will get this problem fixed.
But in the meantime, there are things you can do to undo the problem.
- Reply to the gibberish text in iMessage, and the reply can be any string of text.
If you don't have a Mac:
- Send a text message via a third-party application by using its share feature.
- Ask Siri to issue a reply or "read unread messages." Then reply to free your Messages.
- When you're in Messages, delete the whole chain.
- If you know who sent the crazy message, ask them to send a follow-up message.
A software update will soon be coming from Apple that will include a fix to this situation.