Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Apple IDs Compromised: iPhones, iPads, and Macs Ransomed

Apple IDs Compromised: iPhones, iPads, and Macs Locked, Held for Ransom

Many users in Australia and New Zealand have had their Apple IDs compromised. We are seeing reports on Apple’s support community and social networks that their Apple devices are being remotely locked and held for ransom by someone claiming to be Oleg Pliss, a software engineer at Oracle, who the attackers randomly chose to pin this attack on.

Figure 1. Locked iPhone ransom message

What happened to my Apple device?

Based on initial feedback, a number of Apple IDs have been compromised and used to lock iPhones, iPads, and Macs. It remains unclear exactly how the Apple IDs were compromised, but possible explanations include phishing attempts, weak passwords, or password reuse. A separate breach involving emails and passwords used to login to Apple and iCloud could have facilitated the compromise of the Apple IDs.

Once an Apple ID is compromised, attackers can access the Find My iPhone feature in iCloud. This feature is used to locate your devices if they have an internet connection and turn on the Lost Mode feature. Once Lost Mode is turned on, the attacker can remotely play a sound, lock the device, and display a ransom message.

Whatever you do, do NOT pay the ransom. There is no guarantee that the criminals responsible will unlock your device.

How to deal with a compromised Apple ID

While your devices have been locked, the root issue is the compromise of your Apple ID. First, you should login to your Apple ID accountand confirm that your password has not been changed. If it has not, you should immediately secure the account by changing your password. Once changed, make sure you login to your iCloud account and sign out of all browsers just to be safe.

How to deal with a locked device

If you had set a passcode on your device prior to the compromise, you can simply unlock it by inputting your passcode.

However, if you did not set a passcode on your device, then your phone will remain locked. This is because the attacker is required to set a passcode for your device when enabling the Lost Mode feature. In this scenario, you should call Apple support for further assistance. However, most users are reporting that the only option to recover the device is to wipe the device and restore it from a backup.

How to secure your Apple ID and devices

Even if this did not impact you directly, it is a good time to review and implement the following security measures to protect your Apple ID and devices.

1. Set a passcode on your phone or tablet. We cannot stress this one enough. Although it may be annoying to have to input a passcode to unlock your device, it is a basic security measure to prevent unauthorized physical access to your device. And in this case, it could save you the trouble of having to perform a factory reset on your device.

2. Use a strong, unique password for your Apple ID. If you need help creating a strong password, use a password generator and consider using a password manager, such as LastPass, 1Pass, KePass, or Norton Identity Safe.

3. Set up two step verification for your Apple ID. While it is labeled as an optional security feature, enabling two step verification will make it that much harder for an attacker to access your account without having physical access to your phone or other trusted device.

4. Back up your devices. In the event that you have to perform a factory reset, having a backup will ensure you do not lose your settings, messages, photos and documents.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Our Fresh Water: Monitoring Report Confirms Serious Challenges For Rivers

• nitrogen levels are getting worse at 55 percent and getting better at 28 percent of monitored river sites across New Zealand • phosphorus levels are getting better at 42 percent and getting worse at 25 percent of monitored river sites across New Zealand More>>

ALSO:

Stats: Wind And Geothermal Emerge As Significant Sources Of Energy

Geothermal’s contribution to New Zealand’s total renewable energy generation increased from 11.5 percent in 2007 to 21 percent in 2015.... The value of wind jumped from $238 million (2 percent of total renewable energy generation) in 2007 to $884 million (6 percent) in 2015. More>>

Errors Found: Electricity Authority Dumps Transmission Pricing Modelling

The Electricity Authority is ditching the cost-benefit analysis at the heart of its controversial attempt to find a new way to divide up costs for the national grid after finding an expanding range of serious computational errors in the work by Australian consultancy Oakley Greenwood. More>>

ALSO:

New Record: Migrant Arrivals At 129,500 A Year

Annual net migration has been steadily increasing since 2012. "This was mainly due to the rising number of migrant arrivals to New Zealand," population statistics senior manager Peter Dolan said. "Fewer migrant departures also contributed to the increase in net migration." More>>

ALSO:

Launched: NASA's Super Pressure Balloon Takes Flight From NZ

NASA successfully launched its football-stadium-sized, heavy-lift super pressure balloon (SPB) from Wanaka, New Zealand, at10:50 a.m. Tuesday, April 25 (6:50 p.m. April 24 in U.S. Eastern Time), on a mission designed to run 100 or more days floating at 110,000 feet (33.5 km) about the globe in the southern hemisphere's mid-latitude band. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news