Apple Denies Hackers Holding Millions of Accounts to Ransom

Apple has denied that hackers are holding millions of iPhones and iCloud accounts to ransom.

Apple has denied that hackers are holding millions of iPhones and iCloud accounts to ransom.

The firm has reassured its customers that none of its systems have been breached and denies that millions of iPhones and iCloud accounts are at risk of being wiped, stating “there have not been any breaches in any of Apple’s systems including iCloud and Apple ID”.

The claims of a hack come after online tech magazine Motherboard reported on 21 March that a group of hackers called ‘The Turkish Crime Family’ had threatened to wipe millions of iPhones and iCloud accounts unless Apple paid a ransom of $75,000 or $100,000 worth of iTunes gift cards by April.

The hackers claimed to have access to up to 559 million Apple email and iCloud accounts, but did not provide any of the supposedly stolen credentials to verify this claim.

A YouTube video supposedly shows a member of the group using stolen credentials to access an iCloud account and view photos.

According to Apple the list of email addresses and passwords hackers claim to have appears to be from “previously compromised third-party services”.

The firm said they will continue to “actively monitor” the situation and work with law enforcement to ensure that user data remains safe.

Apple said: “To protect against these type of attacks, we recommend that users always use strong passwords, not use those same passwords across sites, and turn on two-factor authentication.”

Security adviser, Graham Cluley, said the claims underline the potential for hackers to steal data and use the media to increase pressure on organisations to pay up to avoid exposure.

In a blog post he wrote: “I believe that companies should do everything in their power to protect their customers and prevent criminals from profiting from extortion.”

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