Apple has just concluded a 40-hour investigation into the recent hacking of nude photos from celebrity iCloud accounts and their verdict? Don’t blame us, blame yourselves.
“Hunger Games” actress Jennifer Lawrence, singer Ariana Grande, and model Kate Upton were among the many celebrities targeted when their racy photos began to appear on anonymous message board 4Chan on Sunday night.
According to Apple’s investigations, the high profile victims were the subject of targeted hacking attempts that focused on compromising their usernames, passwords, and security questions. The company hasn’t explicitly confirmed that brute force — successively trying dictionary terms until the password is guessed — was at play here but they did, however, maintain that the hackers didn’t breach their security systems.
The full statement reads as follows:
We wanted to provide an update to our investigation into the theft of photos of certain celebrities. When we learned of the theft, we were outraged and immediately mobilized Apple’s engineers to discover the source. Our customers’ privacy and security are of utmost importance to us. After more than 40 hours of investigation, we have discovered that certain celebrity accounts were compromised by a very targeted attack on user names, passwords and security questions, a practice that has become all too common on the Internet. None of the cases we have investigated has resulted from any breach in any of Apple’s systems including iCloud® or Find my iPhone. We are continuing to work with law enforcement to help identify the criminals involved.
To protect against this type of attack, we advise all users to always use a strong password and enable two-step verification. Both of these are addressed on our website at http://support.apple.com/kb/ht4232.