The Russian Interior Ministry has announced that it has stopped a hacker group that was locking Apple devices in order to extort a ransom from users.
A statement, translated from the original, says the Interior Ministry became aware of the scam earlier this year. It said that it received reports that hardware was being remotely blocked and locked and users were getting demands for money to release their content.
"The introduction of new electronic services inevitably entails the emergence of new threats," it said.
"The analysis showed that the attackers used the opportunity to appear in the latest versions of the mobile operating system iOS service, called Find my iPhone, designed to find and block lost or stolen mobile phones or tablets."
The attacks began on two fronts and the statement says that the first gained access to email accounts by using phishing and social engineering tricks. The other saw hackers bind another device to someone else's Apple ID.
"Outcomes of the two schemes is the loss of control over their victims devices to unlock," it added.
Two residents of Moscow, who are unnamed, were arrested this week and their apartments searched. the statement says that they were born in 1991 and 1998 and at least one has been tried before.
The statement does not mention it, but the attacks in question sound like the recent Oleg Pliss attacks that V3 reported on last month.
Then Apple reacted to the risk with advice that users should change their passwords. "Apple takes security very seriously and iCloud was not compromised during this incident," it said.
"Impacted users should change their Apple ID password as soon as possible and avoid using the same user name and password for multiple services. Any users who need additional help can contact AppleCare or visit their local Apple Retail Store."
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