Looking at iCloud Safety Following Photo Hack

The FBI is investigating how nude photos of some celebrities ended up online for the world to see. Many of the pictures appear to have been stored on Apple’s iCloud storage system.

The celebrity hack list is quite long and includes actresses like Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and Kirsten Dunst. The photos surfaced are explicit and very private. And now they’re on the internet for everyone to see.

The hackers claimed to have targeted more than 100 celebrities. The photos, apparently lifted from a cloud based storage service, Apple’s iCloud emerged as a likely target. Wednesday Apple acknowledged that saying, “We have discovered that certain celebrity accounts were compromised by a very targeted attack on user names, passwords and security questions…”

But the statement also says that the company’s actual systems were not breached. So how safe is the cloud?

“The positives are if you store your data in the cloud, it’s less likely to get lost, so if you lose your phone or your phone breaks or drop in the lake, you usually lose all your data. And so if the cloud protects you from that, however, it also exposes the data to being breached if you use a bad password or if the cloud service gets hacked,” said Kevin Mahafey with Lookout Mobile Security.

Sometimes if you delete a photo from a device, it may still live on the cloud. Still, experts say the two main ways to better protect your data are:
1. Create strong and unique passwords.
2. Enable two step authentication where you have to enter a four or five digit code usually sent to your phone via text message.

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