Alright, to be perfectly honest and rather brazen about it, no matter what device or online service you use, if it’s connected to the interwebs, it’s under attack all the time, 24/7, it never ends. Yes, iCloud is under attack.
So are all the Macs, iPhones, and iPads connect to the internet. Every device is under assault. Most attacks are done by various and sundry automated bots probing for weaknesses; they hit, and move on. Others are attacked with a specific intent in mind; think criminals looking for bank or credit card information, or, the government looking for terrorist and criminals.
What about attacks that have already happened? That’s the latest iCloud attack.
Apple Under Siege
Let me repeat. If it’s a device connected to the internet, it’s under siege from attacks coming from all over the world. It’s the nature of modern computing technology and there isn’t much we can do about it other than check our accounts, and change passwords from time to time, and don’t do something totally stupid.
Here’s the latest. Criminals, hackers, or scam artists claim to have a few hundred million iCloud account details– that means usernames and passwords– and they’re holding Apple ransom by demanding money or they will erase those accounts.
Scared much? You should be. Why? If someone knows your iCloud username and password they can wipe your iPhone and iPad, get into your iTunes account (usually attached to a credit card) and cause a level of havoc and grilled like the world has never seen.
Apple claims that iCloud has not been hacked, and whatever the criminals, hackers, or scam artists have has been on the market for awhile and hasn’t caused any mass problems (that Apple is willing to talk about). As of now, security experts have wildly differing opinions on both the scope and validity of this particular iCloud account hack and potential attack. Some checks show many account details to be accurate, while many others are old or no longer used.
Alright, let’s get back down to earth. The group claiming to be ready to unleash this attack on more than 200-million iCloud account owners claims to be from London, U.K. and the ransom they’re asking for is… insert drum roll here… $75,000. In Bitcoin. Or, $100,000 in iTunes Gift Cards. Why not $1-million in Bitcoin. Or, $10-billion?
Seems more like script kiddies than serious hackers ready to destroy a company’s customer base.
Here’s another issue with such destruction. It doesn’t happen instantly because a few hundred million devices are involved. And, wiping an iPhone remotely doesn’t mean the iCloud account has been wiped, too. An inconvenience, yes; but not total, wanton destruction. Apple says to move along; there’s nothing to see here, but I’m certain that the April 7th deadline imposed by the criminals, hackers, or scam artists may keep a few of the company’s engineers up late the night before.
In the meantime, two-factor authentication is your friend, as is a new password. Inconvenient? Yes. Is there a better way? No.