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Apple Responds to Hacker Claims, says There’s Nothing Wrong

Exterior of a Hong Kong Apple store

It seems like Apple clarified what is going on regarding those recent claims by a group of hackers that they managed to gain access to millions of iCloud accounts from all over the world. A spokesperson from Apple said in an official statement that neither of their systems, iCloud or Apple ID, have suffered any breaches of information. And that the list of email addresses and passwords is actually from older, third party services which hackers compromised in the past. So, Apple is saying that their users should not worry because those hacking claims are not true at all.

The hacker group

According to a report, the hacker group called the Turkish Crime Family, claimed to have obtained the details of over 300 million iCloud accounts, from all over the world. Their aim was to get money from Apple, in exchange for those account details. They asked for $75,000 in Bitcoin or Ethereum (another cryptocurrency), or $100,000 in iTunes gift cards. They requested the payment by April 7th. An anonymous member of the hacker group reportedly said that they thought Apple clients might have wanted to hear what they had to say. However, somebody was indeed lying in regards with the number of stolen accounts. One member said there were 300 million, while another said 559 million.

At fault for this misunderstanding might be the website LinkedIn. Experts discovered that lots of the email addresses and passwords from the hacker group’s list were the same with those from LinkedIn, from back in 2012. There was another huge security breach back then, and the business networking site fell victim to it. However, the biggest problem is that this group is not the first one to reuse the data stolen in 2012 from LinkedIn. Other hackers have done the same thing and tested the passwords to gain access to other services and accounts. Some of them, like the Turkish Crime Family, scared people by saying that what they had was freshly stolen information. This is another reason why people should have different passwords for different services and accounts.

Apple says to not worry

Even if the information would have been newly stolen, Apple says that they are not worried. They are reportedly taking very good care of their iCloud service and are always monitoring and preventing any suspicious activity. They are also taking measures when there is an unauthorized login on those accounts. People from Apple also advised users to have very strong and difficult passwords and to not repeat them for many accounts.

The Turkish Crime Family group supposedly showed Motherboard a video in which a hacker easily gained access into a woman’s iCloud account. He could access her photos, personal information and could completely wipe her device as well. Now, nobody knows whether or not this entire scene was something fake or if it was indeed true. Also, it is uncertain if the hackers could do this to all the accounts, and not just one of them. All in all, for now, Apple is saying that their clients should be calm because their accounts are safe.

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