Tag Archives: iOS 5
Tech Blogger Mat Honan had his iCloud account hacked last Friday. Linked to that account were his iPad, iPhone, and computer, along with Gizmodo’s Twitter feed, which were all compromised in this attack. Funny thing is, Apple’s Tech Support were partially responsible.
Honan posted on his blog his own recollection of what was happening on his end during the attack. He says that his phone randomly went dead, then rebooted to the setup screen. He just assumed that it was a software glitch. Nothing more than a nuisance to him. When he tried to log into his iCloud account, his password was rejected. From there, he attempted to reboot from his MacBook, only to find that the iCal information for his Gmail account was incorrect. His screen then went grey, and it asked for his four-digit pin.
He didn’t have a four-digit pin.
“By now, I knew something was very, very wrong. I walked to the hallway to grab my iPad from my work bag. It had been reset too. I couldn’t turn on my computer, my iPad, or iPhone.”
His MacBook became completely wiped.
The full account can be found on his blog.
As he looked for solutions to his problem, the hacker made contact with him. Later, Mat found out how it all happened:
“I know how it was done now. Confirmed with both the hacker and Apple. It wasn’t password related. They got in via Apple tech support and some clever social engineering that let them bypass security questions. Apple has my Macbook and is trying to recover the data. I’m back in all my accounts that I know I was locked out of. Still trying to figure out where else they were.”
It seems like you can simply sweet-talk your way into someone’s account. Awesome. I mean, for this to actually happen, you probably need to be someone recognised in a larger society. I don’t really think this is a random attack on a random person. But it’s still not very reassuring to know that, regardless of security questions, this sort of thing can happen.
Apple are supposedly looking into their policy now, and making the necessary alterations to protect its users more thoroughly. To be fair, though, there wasn’t really much for them to do in this situation – if the hacker had actually been telling the truth, and the account was genuinely his, they were obliged to help however they could.
It really makes you think, though, how many times this has actually happened to people. I, for one, hardly forget my passwords, and if I do, then my security question is usually enough to give it back to me. You would think that, in this situation, they would have seen that Mat Honan had been using his same password for years, so there wasn’t really any reason for him to randomly forget it, all of a sudden. But I guess different people have different circumstances.
Moral of the story: don’t become well-known enough to have people want to hijack you. Social protocol will usually always overrule any other security measures, when it comes to tech support with any products.
How safe do you feel, being in New Zealand? I’m not entirely bothered by this thought. I feel like, because we’re a smaller country, that this couldn’t really happen to anyone here. Call it ignorance, call it arrogance – I’m just saying that I have bigger things to worry about.…Read More
Sure, the occasional zombie game for the iPhone or iPad can be quite amusing, but when your application actually becomes the zombie, then it’s no longer fun times. ‘Zombie Apps’ is a term used by mobile analytic firm Adeven. These ‘Zombie Apps’ are applications that have managed to sit in the App Store with no downloads, are invisible to users and have no ranking. AppTrace, a new tool developed by Adeven, shows that there are 400,000 of these apps infecting the store, out of a total of just over 650,000. That’s approximately 2/3 of the entire App Store. The company’s CEO Christian Henschel spoke to Gigaom about their findings, saying that he believes it is “really tough for smaller, independent application developers” to be discovered in the current iOS App Store.
Christian Henschel states:
“The reality is there are only a couple of thousand apps that really make some kind of downloads. This is based on Apple’s closed system — it’s tough to discover those kinds of apps. You don’t have proper search, so the only way to discover new apps is through the top listing. If you’re not on those lists, it’s not sure that you’re being discovered by anyone else. The top 25 tend to be the same companies who spend millions of dollars to get to the top of those lists. If you’re an independent, small app publisher, then it’s really tough to be discovered.”
Apple announced in June that there had been a total of 30 billion downloads from the iOS App Store, and that $5 billion had been paid out to the App developers. If exposure had been made available to these ‘Zombie Apps’, then perhaps the total number of downloads would be higher, along with the payout.
Apple has reportedly been working continuously behind the scenes to improve the discovery of content on the App Store. Earlier this year, Apple bought Chomp, a search engine for mobile applications. The price had not been disclosed, but it had been reported by Bloomberg that the Curpertino, California-based company paid about $50 million USD for Chomp. It expected that this acquisition is going to enhance the discovery of new applications and content on the App Store.
AppTrace has many competitors, with the likes of Keen.io and Count.ly, except AppTrace is trying to take a different approach. AppTrace is, so far, easy to use, and has an aesthetically-pleasing interface. They claim to be faster, more comprehensive and better sourced, with data being refreshed every six hours at the latest.
Henschel goes on to comment about his new release:
“We’re not only measuring success within the app, but also within the ecosystem. We will also soon be launching a feature where you can compare apps against each other, which is something that’s not available at the moment.”
This certainly seems promising for current and upcoming app developers. At least we can see that the issues with application promotion have been addressed, and are slowly, but surely, being dealt with. I am no developer myself, but even I can see the use for these new features – I’m especially looking forward to the integration of Chomp. Do you guys feel that this has been a worthwhile investment?…Read More
I hope your broadband data cap is in good standing, because it won’t be by the end of the day! As well as the long-awaited iOS 5, Apple have released a barrage of updates for both Mac and iOS apps as well as launched some brand new ones. Keep reading for a summary of what’s new.…Read More
After all the hype and the months of insufferable wild speculation, it pains me to say that if today’s announcement could be summed up in a word it would be: yawn. This will certainly go down in history as one of the least exciting iPhone keynotes (in my opinion at least), but for New Zealand in particular there is even less to be excited about. Why? Keep reading.…Read More
Apple has seeded iOS 5 beta 6 to developers this morning, along with iTunes 10.5 beta 6. The update is available as either a full download or OTA delta update (which appears to be nice and easy this time around, unlike beta 5) and appears to be a bug-fix release rather than one that adds any major new functionality.…Read More
Apple has release beta 5 of iOS 5 to developers this morning which can be applied as either a full build or an OTA delta update. The OTA update for beta 4 was incredibly convenient, but it’s a different story for beta 5 as in order to begin the update you’ll need to head into the Settings menu and erase and reset all of the content on your device. Icky! There’s also a new iTunes 10.5 beta to go with it. Have fun!
(Thanks, Blair!)…Read More
iOS 5 Beta 4 OTA updates are go! Need I say more! OK I will….…Read More