E-Mail Addresses Of iPad 3G Owners Leak Out In AT&T Database Hack

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News Posted: Wed, Jun 9 2010 11:52 PM
Wow. This is not at all what AT&T or Apple had in mind for today.Just hours after Apple made a huge announcement that involved the nextgreat smartphone for AT&T (yes, the iPhone 4), there's been abombshell dropped that has temporarily made the focus on both companiesdistinctively more negative than usual. So, what could happen to putboth Apple and AT&T in such a bad light? Oh, nothing but lettinghackers access well over 100,000 e-mail addresses from prior iPad 3G +Wi-Fi buyers.

We told you "wow" was an appropriate response, didn't we? According toreports, a hacker group by the name of Goatse Security was able toslide into AT&T's website and trick it into sending back sensitiveinformation. The "information" involved the e-mail addresses associatedwith the SIM identifiers on the 3G version of Apple's iPad. A grandtotal of 114,000 addresses were found, including the CEO of the New YorkTimes, New York's Mayor, and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.We bet Facebook is loving this given all the bad press it has receivedover security. It's not as easy as it looks to keep everything underwraps, it seems.

Here's an AT&T statement on the matter: "AT&T was informed by a business customer on Monday of the potential exposure of their iPad ICC IDS. The only information that can be derived from the ICC IDS is the e-mail address attached to that device. This issue was escalated to the highest levels of the company and was corrected by Tuesday; and we have essentially turned off the feature that provided the e-mail addresses. The person or group who discovered this gap did not contact AT&T. We are continuing to investigate and will inform all customers whose e-mail addresses and ICC IDS may have been obtained. At this point, there is no evidence that any other customer information was shared. We take customer privacy very seriously and while we have fixed this problem, we apologize to our customers who were impacted."

In the end, you must realize that this whole ordeal could have been farworse. Just knowing an e-mail address isn't the worst in the world. Onlyso much pain can be caused before a user sets up a filter to block anyadded spam, and there's always the option of creating a new address andpicking up where you left off. At least credit card digits weren'tshared, and it seems that the hole has been plugged. Still, knowing this, how many of you are now not going to purchase an iPhone 4 since it's obvious that your e-mail address may end up in someone else's hands? Right, just what we thought.

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Xylem replied on Thu, Jun 10 2010 1:47 AM

ha haBig Smile. About time, more and more Apple hardware becomes targeted. Windows & MS had been in the news quite too often for such stuff!!

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Yeah Xylem. The greater the market for your device the more tempting it becomes for hackers.

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3vi1 replied on Thu, Jun 10 2010 8:04 AM

Just wait until the e-mails for all of the HP printers leak out. :)

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?


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I remember how I was explaining to my friend who wanted to argue about viruses for Mac vs Windows computers. I had to tell him that people have already made Mac viruses, but they choose to attack Windows computers because the majority of the computer owner population owns windows based computers.

I wrapped up my statement by telling him that when more people get Mac devices that the hackers will begin to target those as well.

Isn't Apple's security department being neglected? Not so much anymore.

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rapid1 replied on Thu, Jun 10 2010 1:56 PM

This is the one reason I have never gotten an iPhone, the network. I don't like At&t, I don't think there competent, I abhor there business practices, and do not trust there network. Long ago I actually had a contract with them, and know how spotty there coverage is. So it does not surprise me at all that this happened because it is expected.

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Another day, another black eye for AT&T.Big Smile

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These are just a little stepping stone just like the web cams in the high schools, just to get people used to things like this. Why are we not looking around ourselves to find the hackers and put an end to that? We only do just enough, they then get happy when new infrastructures like Antivirus companies get developed.

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3vi1 replied on Fri, Jun 11 2010 7:59 PM

@Marius: This has nothing to do with Apple security. The e-mail addresses were copied from a non-Apple server thanks to a brain-dead script that returns the email based on hardware ID.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?


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