The group – who describe themselves as ‘Turkish Crime Family’ – claim to have demanded $75,000 in Bitcoin or Ethereum cryptocurrency, according to Motherboard. A hacker said, ‘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.’They claim to have credentials which would allow them access to hundreds of millions of users’ accounts, according to the report in Motherboard – and are threatening to wipe a number of them unless they are paid.
Screenshots of supposed discussions with Apple show Apple’s security team requesting that the gang delete a YouTube video where they supposedly access an elderly woman’s iCloud account.
What is less clear is if the threat is real – or if the group even exists. Beyond the evidence shown to Motherboard (screenshotted emails), there’s little proof.
British computer security expert Graham Cluley, writing on Bitdefender’s Hot for Security blog, says, ‘What we don’t know is whether the email exchanges between the hackers and Apple are real or faked, and – indeed – whether the so-called “Turkish Crime Gang” really has access to a large number of Apple users’ credentials.
‘If it’s true that the hackers are attempting to engage with the media in an attempt to increase their chances of a substantial payout then that would be in line with an increasingly common technique deployed by extortionists.’
How to Protect Your iCloud Account From Hackers
Whether the claims and threat are real or not, if hackers gain access to your iCloud account, they could easily download all your photos and other private data.
In order to keep your iCloud account safe from hackers, Apple users are advised to change their iCloud passwords immediately and enable two-step authentication to add an extra layer of security to your account.
We have already aware of the consequences iCloud accounts can make if they get hacked by malicious attackers. In 2014, iCloud hack led to The Fappening, wherein hackers flooded the Internet with nude photos of hundreds of female celebrities, which were stored in their iCloud accounts.
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