2011 is quickly becoming one of the most notorious years for high-profile Internet hacking. Plenty of well-known developers and manufacturers have had problems including the infamous PlayStation Network breach, server hacks at fan-favorite developers such as BioWare and Bethesda – even Nintendo failed to escape controversy.
Now, one of the leaders in electronics innovation may have also been compromised – Apple. It should be made clear upfront that the iTunes servers were unaffected and that no credit card information and little-to-no personal information was even stolen.
According to CVG, the hacker collaborative “Anonymous” has once again struck out against one of the largest companies in the tech industry – as part of their antisec campaign. Apple has yet to release an official statement, which certainly points to the notion that the hack was minor – compared to the scale of devastation we’ve seen lately.
According to the report, user data from an Apple Technical Support server was posted online at Pastebin – following an alleged hack on July 4th. Apple has since taken the server down. While certainly an inconvenience, users shouldn’t get too worked up at this time. Anonymous posted 27 usernames and passwords at Pastebin but it appears that no sensitive info such as billing addresses, phone numbers, or names were compromised. Once again, the hack was not related to an iTunes account info servers – so there’s no need to panic. The level of security on the Apple tech support site is, without a doubt, lower than the iTunes account info servers.
That said, who would have guessed hackers would have been able to slip-by Sony so easily.
With that in mind, Anonymous has already hinted (via Twitter) at a much larger attack on Apple:
“All the media buzz about the drive-by Apple drop on Pastebin makes us wonder what would happen if they get really hit? We do have something prepared for a little later though. Most unpleasing discoveries force us to publish a bit of information.”
The Anonymous (and now defunct LulzSec) hacks are certainly a pain and have been almost universally booed by gamers, designers, and industry leaders – hopefully, if nothing else, the continued hacker assault will cause their targets to adopt comprehensive, strict, and evolving anti-hacking strategies to keep user information safe.
There’s little doubt that as the Internet evolves and more sites/companies offer online profiles and stores – the danger of personal information arriving in the wrong hands will continue to increase dramatically.
Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick and let us know how you feel about the ongoing Anonymous hacks.