In response to the recent “celebrity photo leak” Apple CEO Tim Cook has spoken to the Wall Street Journal about measures the company plans to put in place in the wake of the event.
Apple have confirmed they are working with the FBI on their investigations over the breach of privacy, and have gone to some lengths to make it clear this was in no way a breach of the Apple servers, instead it seems clear the hackers correctly answered security questions to obtain passwords, or used phishing scams to obtain the User IDs and passwords.
In the interview, Tim Cook says that Apple will – within weeks – begin sending “push notifications” when someone tries to change an account password, restore iCloud data to a new device, or when a device logs into an account for the first time.
Apple users will be familiar with this in the way that iMessage currently works. If you add your iCloud account to another device and enable iMessage, all devices using iMessage with that account are sent a popup/push notification.
Using this method, Apple will allow people to “take action immediately”.
In the WSJ interview, Mr Cook also touches on what he calls the “awareness” piece, noting that the company has a responsibility to “ratchet that up”
He also states that while Apple has a two-factor authentication program in place, but will broaden that to include sign ins to iCloud on a mobile device, and while the majority are not currently using two-factor, Mr Cook says Apple plans to more aggressively encourage people to turn it on within the upcoming iOS8 release.
The measures he outline sound like just what is needed to reassure users, and will most likely come in a software update for all iOS users in the coming weeks, as well as in the new iOS 8 – although that was not specifically made clear.
To read more about Two-factor authentication and how to use it read our article, and to read the full WSJ story follow this link.