Wednesday, September 5, 2012

FBI stored information on Apple device users hacked

Cynthia Hodges

Twelve million Apple device user's personal information stored on the laptop of FBI agent were exposed by hacktivists targeting the agency.

One million of the Apple device IDs have been released, including full user names, addresses and telephone numbers attached. In the announcement released on Twitter, hackers said they figured a million would be enough to make their point.
"Why exposing [sic] this personal data?" asked the unnamed writer of the Pastebin posting announcing the data dump, who claimed to be affiliated with the anti-government hacktivist group AntiSec. "Well, we have learnt it seems quite clear nobody pays attention if you just come and say 'Hey, FBI is using your device details and info and who the [expletive] knows what the hell are they experimenting with that," well sorry, but nobody will care."
In Forbes, Parmy Olson points out that the breach raises many questions, not only about the security of federal devices, but of why an agent might have (allegedly) been carrying a database of Apple UDIDs, with user's personal information, and even Apple Push Notification Service tokens of iPhone and iPad users.

It isn't the first time the hacktivists have exposed vulnerabilities in the security of federal agencies computer networks, including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, DoD and the FBI.

In January, hacktivists of the Anonymous collective breached a conference call between FBI agents and Britain’s Scotland Yard in which the Anonymous and LulzSec wee discussed.

Anonymous released an audio recording of a January conference call between FBI agents and Britain’s Scotland Yard in which the hacktivist group Anonymous was discussed.

The FBI confirmed the authenticity of the recording, and said the agency was investigating to how hactivists linked to the Anonymous network managed to intercept a conference call.

The AntiSec group argues that the FBI will “deny or ignore” the latest Apple ID incident, but says that someone should care how the FBI obtained the vast amount of information on Apple users and how it’s being used to track citizens.

The USA Patriot Act gives the feds authority to collect information on U.S. citizens without their knowledge or consent and without a warrant - if is connected to a suspected terrorist investigation, which as defined includes any American citizen.

Both candidates for U.S. President in the 2012 election fully support the USA Patriot Act, and it may be the only issue on both sides of the isle that the U.S. Congress can agree on.

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