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iCloud Possibly Suffered A Privacy Breach Last Year That Apple Kept a Secret

iCloud Possibly Suffered A Privacy Breach Last Year That Apple Kept a Secret

January 30, 2019Mohit Kumar
Late last year when an unknown group of hackers stole secret access tokens for millions of Facebook accounts by taking advantage of a flaw in its website, the company disclosed the incident and informed its affected users. Similarly, when Twitter was hit by multiple vulnerabilities ( #1 , #2 , #3 ) in the last few months, the social media company disclosed those incidents and informed its affected users. And Guess What? Google is going to shut down its social media network Google+ in April this year after admitting two security flaws in its platform that exposed private data of hundreds of thousands of users to third-party developers. It turns out that Apple also possibly suffered a privacy breach late last year due to a bug in its platform that might have exposed some of your iCloud data to other users, but the company chose to keep the incident secret... maybe because it was not worth to disclose, or perhaps much more complicated. Last week, Turkish security researcher Me
Hackers Used Malicious MDM Solution to Spy On 'Highly Targeted' iPhone Users

Hackers Used Malicious MDM Solution to Spy On 'Highly Targeted' iPhone Users

July 13, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Security researchers have uncovered a "highly targeted" mobile malware campaign that has been operating since August 2015 and found spying on 13 selected iPhones in India. The attackers, who are also believed to be operating from India, were found abusing mobile device management (MDM) protocol—a type of security software used by large enterprises to control and enforce policies on devices being used their employees—to contol and deploy malicious applications remotely. Exploiting Apple MDM Service to Remotely Control Devices To enroll an iOS device into the MDM requires a user to manually install enterprise development certificate, which enterprises obtained through the Apple Developer Enterprise Program. Companies can deliver MDM configuration file through email or a webpage for over-the-air enrollment service using Apple Configurator. Once a user installs it, the service allows the company administrators to remotely control the device, install/remove apps, in
Phone-Cracking Firm Found a Way to Unlock Any iPhone Model

Phone-Cracking Firm Found a Way to Unlock Any iPhone Model

February 27, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Remember the infamous encryption fight between Apple and the FBI for unlocking an iPhone belonging to a terrorist behind the San Bernardino mass shooting that took place two years ago? After Apple refused to help the feds access data on the locked iPhone, the FBI eventually paid over a million dollar to a third-party company for unlocking the shooter's iPhone 5c. Now, it appears that the federal agency will not have to fight Apple over unlocking iPhones since the Israeli mobile forensics firm Cellebrite has reportedly figured out a way to unlock almost any iPhone in the market, including the latest iPhone X. Cellebrite , a major security contractor to the United States law enforcement agencies, claims to have a new hacking tool for unlocking pretty much every iPhone running iOS 11 and older versions, Forbes reports. In its own literature [ PDF ] "Advanced Unlocking and Extraction Services," Cellebrite says its services can break the security of "Apple iO
Judge: FBI Doesn't Have to Reveal How It Unlocked iPhone Used by San Bernardino Terrorist

Judge: FBI Doesn't Have to Reveal How It Unlocked iPhone Used by San Bernardino Terrorist

October 02, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Remember the infamous encryption fight between the FBI and Apple for unlocking an iPhone belonging to terrorist Syed Farook behind the San Bernardino 2015 mass shooting that killed 14 people? The same Apple vs. FBI case where Apple refused to help feds access data on the locked iPhone and, later the Federal Bureau of Investigation reportedly paid over a million dollars to a vendor for unlocking the shooter's iPhone. For keeping the iPhone hack secret, three news organizations—The Associated Press, USA Today, and Vice Media—sued the FBI last year under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and forced the agency to reveal the name of the company and the amount it was paid to unlock the iPhone . However, unfortunately, they failed. A US federal judge ruled Saturday that the FBI does not have to disclose the name of or how much it paid a private company for an  iPhone hacking tool that unlocked Farook's iPhone. Apple vs. FBI was one of the biggest legal battles in
Wikileaks Reveals How CIA Was Hacking Your iPhones And MacBooks

Wikileaks Reveals How CIA Was Hacking Your iPhones And MacBooks

March 23, 2017Swati Khandelwal
As part of its " Vault 7 " series, Wikileaks — the popular whistle-blowing platform — has just released another batch of classified documents focused on exploits and hacking techniques the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) designed to target Apple MacOS and iOS devices. Dubbed " Dark Matter ," the leak uncovers macOS vulnerabilities and attack vectors developed by a special division of the CIA called Embedded Development Branch (EDB) – the same branch that created ‘ Weeping Angel ’ attack – and focused specifically on hacking Mac and iOS firmware. CIA Infects Apple Devices With Unremovable Malware The newly released documents revealed that CIA had also been targeting the iPhone since 2008. The Agency has created a malware that is specially designed to infect Apple firmware in a way that the infection remains active on MacOS and iOS devices even if the operating system has been re-installed. According to Wikileaks, the released documents also gives a c
Hackers Threaten to Remotely Wipe 300 Million iPhones Unless Apple Pays Ransom

Hackers Threaten to Remotely Wipe 300 Million iPhones Unless Apple Pays Ransom

March 22, 2017Mohit Kumar
If you use iCloud to sync your Apple devices, your private data may be at risk of getting exposed or deleted by April 7th. It has been found that a mischievous group of hackers claiming to have access to over 300 million iCloud accounts is threatening Apple to remotely wipe data from those millions of Apple devices unless Apple pays it $75,000 in crypto-currency or $100,000 worth of iTunes gift cards. The hacking group, who identified themselves as 'Turkish Crime Family,' has demanded a ransom to be paid in Bitcoin or Ethereum, another popular crypto-currency. Motherboard broke this story on Tuesday after a hacker claiming to represent the alleged hacking group shared screenshots of alleged emails between the group and Apple's security team with the publication. "I just want my money and thought this would be an interesting report that a lot of Apple customers would be interested in reading and hearing," the hacker told Motherboard. The screenshots o
Russia Wants Apple to Unlock iPhone belonging to Killer of Russian Ambassador

Russia Wants Apple to Unlock iPhone belonging to Killer of Russian Ambassador

December 22, 2016Swati Khandelwal
You might have also seen a viral video of the assassination of the Russian ambassador to Turkey that quickly spread through the Internet worldwide. Russian Ambassador Andrei Karlov was shot dead by an off-duty police officer in Ankara on December 19 when the ambassador was giving a speech at an art gallery. The shooter managed to pretend himself as his official bodyguard and later shot to death by Turkish special forces. After this shocking incident, Apple has been asked to help unlock an iPhone 4S recovered from the shooter, which could again spark up battle similar to the one between Apple and the FBI earlier this year. Turkish and Russian authorities have asked Apple to help them bypass the PIN code on an iPhone 4S, which, the authorities believe, could assist them to investigate killer's links to various terrorist organizations. Apple is expected to refuse the request, but according to MacReports and other local media, the Russian government is reportedly sending
New Hack: How to Bypass iPhone Passcode to Access Photos and Messages

New Hack: How to Bypass iPhone Passcode to Access Photos and Messages

November 17, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Setting a passcode on your iPhone is the first line of defense to help prevent other people from accessing your personal details. However, it's pretty much easy for anyone with access to your iPhone to bypass the passcode protection (doesn't matter if you configured Touch ID or not) and access your personal photos and messages. A new critical security flaw discovered in iOS 8 and newer, including 10.2 beta 3, allows anyone to bypass iPhone's passcode and gain access to personal information using the benevolent nature of Apple's personal assistant Siri. The security glitch has been discovered by EverythingApplePro and iDeviceHelps and now that they have gone public with a video demonstration, you can expect Apple to fix this issue in the next iOS beta version. All an attacker need is to find out the phone number of the target's iPhone and access to the phone for a few minutes. But, what if you don't have target's phone number? No worries. You can
Chinese Hackers won $215,000 for Hacking iPhone and Google Nexus at Mobile Pwn2Own

Chinese Hackers won $215,000 for Hacking iPhone and Google Nexus at Mobile Pwn2Own

October 27, 2016Swati Khandelwal
The Tencent Keen Security Lab Team from China has won a total prize money of $215,000 in the 2016 Mobile Pwn2Own contest run by Trend Micro's Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) in Tokyo, Japan. Despite the implementation of high-security measures in current devices, the famous Chinese hackers crew has successfully hacked both Apple's iPhone 6S as well as Google's Nexus 6P phones. Hacking iPhone 6S For hacking Apple's iPhone 6S, Keen Lab exploited two iOS vulnerabilities – a use-after-free bug in the renderer and a memory corruption flaw in the sandbox – and stole pictures from the device, for which the team was awarded $52,500 . The iPhone 6S exploit successfully worked despite the iOS 10 update rolled out by Apple this week. Earlier this week, Marco Grassi from Keen Lab was credited by Apple for finding a serious remote code execution flaw in iOS that could compromise a victim's phone by just viewing "a maliciously crafted JPEG" image. However, a
Warning! Your iPhone Can Get Hacked Just by Opening a JPEG Image, PDF or Font File

Warning! Your iPhone Can Get Hacked Just by Opening a JPEG Image, PDF or Font File

October 25, 2016Mohit Kumar
What's worse than knowing that innocent looking JPEGs, PDFs and font files can hijack your iPhone, iPad, and iPod. Yes, attackers can take over your vulnerable Apple's iOS device remotely – all they have to do is trick you to view a maliciously-crafted JPEG graphic or PDF file through a website or an email, which could allow them to execute malicious code on your system. That's a terrible flaw (CVE-2016-4673), but the good news is that Apple has released the latest version of its mobile operating system, iOS 10.1 , for iPhones and iPads to address this remote-code execution flaw, alongside an array of bug fixes. And now that the company has rolled out a security patch, some hackers would surely find vulnerable Apple devices to exploit the vulnerability and take full control of them. So, users running older versions of iOS are advised to update their mobile devices to iOS 10.1 as soon as possible. Besides this remote code execution flaw, the newest iOS 10.1 incl
Apple Weakens iOS 10 Backup Encryption; Now Can Be Cracked 2,500 Times Faster

Apple Weakens iOS 10 Backup Encryption; Now Can Be Cracked 2,500 Times Faster

September 23, 2016Swati Khandelwal
After the iPhone encryption battle between Apple and the FBI , Apple was inspired to work toward making an unhackable future iPhones by implementing stronger security measures even the company can't hack. Even at that point the company hired one of the key developers of Signal — one of the world's most secure, encrypted messaging apps — its core security team to achieve this goal. But it seems like Apple has taken something of a backward step. Apple deliberately weakens Backup Encryption For iOS 10 With the latest update of its iPhone operating system, it seems the company might have made a big blunder that directly affects its users' security and privacy. Apple has downgraded the hashing algorithm for iOS 10 from "PBKDF2 SHA-1 with 10,000 iterations" to "plain SHA256 with a single iteration," potentially allowing attackers to brute-force the password via a standard desktop computer processor. PBKDF2 stands for Password-Based Key Deri
Apple releases 'Emergency' Patch after Advanced Spyware Targets Human Rights Activist

Apple releases 'Emergency' Patch after Advanced Spyware Targets Human Rights Activist

August 25, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Apple has released iOS 9.3.5 update for iPhones and iPads to patch three zero-day vulnerabilities after a piece of spyware found targeting the iPhone used by a renowned UAE human rights defender, Ahmed Mansoor. One of the world's most invasive software weapon distributors, called the NSO Group, has been exploiting three zero-day security vulnerabilities in order to spy on dissidents and journalists. The NSO Group is an Israeli firm that sells spying and surveillance software that secretly tracks a target's mobile phone. The zero-day exploits have allowed the company to develop sophisticated spyware tools that can access the device location, contacts, texts, calls logs, emails and even microphone. Apple fixed these three vulnerabilities within ten days after being informed by two security firms, Citizen Lab and Lookout, who conducted a joint investigation. Background Story: Malware Discovery Mansoor, 46, ‘ Martin Ennals Award ’ winner from the United Arab Emirate
Edward Snowden Designs an iPhone Case to Detect & Block Wireless Snooping

Edward Snowden Designs an iPhone Case to Detect & Block Wireless Snooping

July 22, 2016Swati Khandelwal
We just cannot imagine our lives without smartphones, even for a short while, and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden had not owned a smartphone since 2013 when he began leaking NSA documents that exposed the government's global surveillance program. Snowden fears that cellular signals of the smartphone could be used to locate him, but now, to combat this, he has designed an iPhone case that would detect and fight against government snooping. With help from renowned hardware hacker Andrew "Bunnie" Huang, Snowden has devised the design, which they refer to as an " Introspection Engine, " that would keep journalists, activists, and human rights workers from being tracked by their own devices leaking their location details. "This work aims to give journalists the tools to know when their smartphones are tracking or disclosing their location when the devices are supposed to be in airplane mode," Huang and Snowden wrote in a blog post published Thu
FBI may have found a New Way to Unlock Shooter's iPhone without Apple

FBI may have found a New Way to Unlock Shooter's iPhone without Apple

March 22, 2016Swati Khandelwal
There's more coming to the high-profile Apple vs. FBI case. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) might not need Apple's assistance to unlock iPhone 5C  that belonged to San Bernardino shooter, Syed Rizwan Farook. If you have followed the San Bernardino case closely, you probably know everything about the ongoing encryption battle between the FBI and Apple. In short, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) wants Apple to help the FBI create a backdoored version of its iOS operating system that could let it access data on Farook's locked iPhone 5C. Apple, meanwhile, is evident on its part , saying that the FBI wants the company to effectively create the " software equivalent of cancer " that would likely open up all iPhones to malicious hackers. FBI to Apple: We'll Unlock iPhone by Our Own Now the Feds say they may be able to crack the iPhone without the Apple's assistance after all. In a court filing [ PDF ] submitted on Mo
New York Judge Rules FBI Can't Force Apple to Unlock iPhone

New York Judge Rules FBI Can't Force Apple to Unlock iPhone

March 01, 2016Mohit Kumar
Apple - 1; The FBI - 0 Apple Won a major court victory against the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in an ongoing legal battle similar to San Bernardino. In a New York case, a federal magistrate judge has ruled in favor of Apple, rejecting the U.S. government’s request to force Apple to help the FBI extract data from a locked iPhone. This ruling from United States Magistrate Judge James Orenstein for the Eastern District of New York is a significant boost to Apple's pro-privacy stance to resist the agency's similar efforts over unlocking iPhone 5C of an alleged San Bernardino terrorist. The ruling [ PDF ] was issued on Monday as part of the criminal case against Jun Feng , who was pleaded guilty in October last year to drug charges. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) seized Feng's iPhone 5 last year, but even after consulting the FBI, it was unable to access the iPhone. According to both the DEA and FBI, it’s impossible for them to ov
Hackers WIN $1 Million Bounty for Remotely Hacking latest iOS 9 iPhone

Hackers WIN $1 Million Bounty for Remotely Hacking latest iOS 9 iPhone

November 02, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Well, here's some terrible news for all Apple iOS users… Someone just found an iOS zero-day vulnerability that could allow an attacker to remotely hack your iPhone running the latest version of iOS, i.e. iOS 9. Yes, an unknown group of hackers has sold a zero-day vulnerability to Zerodium , a startup by French-based company Vupen that Buys and Sells zero-day exploits. And Guess what, in How much? $1,000,000. Yes, $1 Million. Last month, a Bug bounty challenge was announced by Zerodium for finding a hack that must allow an attacker to remotely compromise a non-jailbroken Apple device through: A web page on Safari or Chrome browser, In-app browsing action, or Text message or MMS. Zerodium's Founder Chaouki Bekrar confirmed on Twitter that an unnamed group of hackers has won this $1 Million Bounty for sufficiently submitting a remote browser-based iOS 9.1/9.2b Jailbreak (untethered) Exploit. NO More Fun. It's Serious Threat to iOS Use
Apple told Judge: It's Impossible to Access Data on Locked iPhones

Apple told Judge: It's Impossible to Access Data on Locked iPhones

October 21, 2015Swati Khandelwal
US Federal Official: Unlock that iPhone for me? Apple: Sorry, Nobody can do this! Neither we, nor you. Yes, in a similar manner, Apple told a U.S. federal judge that it is " IMPOSSIBLE " to access data stored on a locked iPhone running iOS 8 or later iOS operating system. In short, Apple has reminded everyone that the tech giant can not, and will not, break its users’ encryption if the government official asks it to. Apple revealed this in a court filing late Monday in response to the U.S. federal magistrate judge, who is being requested by the Justice Department to force the company to help authorities extract data from a seized iPhone. However, Apple says that it has the " technical ability " to help federal enforcement unlock older iOS devices – and almost 10 percent of iOS devices are running older versions of the operating system. In the brief filed Monday, Apple said : "In most cases now and in the future, the government's requested order would
YiSpecter — First iOS Malware that Attacks both: Non-jailbroken and Jailbroken Devices

YiSpecter — First iOS Malware that Attacks both: Non-jailbroken and Jailbroken Devices

October 05, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Less than a month after Apple suffered one of its biggest malware attacks ever, security researchers have discovered another strain of malware that they claim targets both jailbroken as well as non-jailbroken iOS devices . Last month, researchers identified more than 4,000 infected apps in Apple's official App Store, which was targeted by a malware attack in which some versions of software used by developers to build apps for iOS and OS X were infected with malware, named XcodeGhost . And Now: Researchers from a California-based network security firm Palo Alto Networks have discovered new malware that targets Apple's iOS users in China and Taiwan. Capabilities of YiSpecter Malware Dubbed YiSpecter , the malware infects iOS devices and once infected, YiSpecter can: Install unwanted apps Replace legitimate apps with ones it has downloaded Force apps to display unwanted, full-screen ads Change bookmarks as well as default search engines in Safari S
Latest iOS 9.0.1 Update Failed to Patch Lockscreen Bypass Hack

Latest iOS 9.0.1 Update Failed to Patch Lockscreen Bypass Hack

September 26, 2015Swati Khandelwal
iOS 9.0.1 – Apple's first update to its new iOS 9 mobile operating system, came out on Wednesday, addressed several bugs in its software. However, unfortunately, it seems that the latest update iOS 9.0.1 doesn't fix the lock screen bypass vulnerability reported by iPhone user Jose Rodriguez. Yes, the serious flaw in iOS 9 that allows anyone – with physical access of your iPhone or iPad – to bypass your device's lock screen and get into your contacts and personal photographs, also Works on iOS 9.0.1 . Video Demonstration: Rodriguez published a new video detailing a step-by-step explanation on how to bypass the passcode on iOS 9 and iOS 9.0.1 device, using the benevolent nature of Apple's personal assistant Siri. The lock screen bypass vulnerability works on all iOS versions from iOS 5.1.1 to the latest released iOS 9.0.1 . Mitigation So, until Apple rolls out an update to patch this bug, the only way available to iPhone users to mitiga
For Better Privacy & Security, Change these iOS 9 Settings Immediately

For Better Privacy & Security, Change these iOS 9 Settings Immediately

September 17, 2015Swati Khandelwal
iOS 9 is out, and it's time to update your iPhone or iPad to the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system. The new iOS is better, faster, and more efficient than its predecessors, with a number of new features and improvements including enhanced multitasking for iPad, Proactive Assistant Siri, new Low Power mode, Transit directions in Maps and many more. You need to download iOS 9 right away. But, after installing it on your iOS device, you should immediately change these security settings to protect your privacy. Besides various new features, iOS 9 also comes with a handful of security and privacy improvements. So, before doing anything like loading new apps, customizing your phone, or syncing your data, you need to check these settings – and if necessary, changed. 1. Locking the Door Boost iOS 9 Security by Setting a Longer 6-digit Passcode When you set up an iOS device, you are asked to create a passcode to encrypt your entire iPho
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