Apple Developer Site Hacked: Personal Information Accessed

Over 275,000 Registered Developers May be at Risk

apple hacked

Apple has been dodging reports about the blackout listed on their developer site, until the Silicon Valley tech giant finally admitted today to a hacker attack against the system. The developers’ site which holds apps, tools and resources to write code for devices like the iPad has been down the last few days. Apple discovered the hack was intended to glean personal information on the developers.

The tech leader released the following statement:

Last Thursday, an intruder attempted to secure personal information of our registered developers from our developer website. Sensitive personal information was encrypted and cannot be accessed, however, we have not been able to rule out the possibility that some developers’ names, mailing addresses, and/or email addresses may have been accessed. In the spirit of transparency, we want to inform you of the issue. We took the site down immediately on Thursday and have been working around the clock since then.

In order to prevent a security threat like this from happening again, we’re completely overhauling our developer systems, updating our server software, and rebuilding our entire database. We apologize for the significant inconvenience that our downtime has caused you and we expect to have the developer website up again soon.

Apple has around 275,000 registered developers for its mobile devices. This is a very bad time for an attack to occur. Reportedly, Apple has several developmental applications lining up, such as the new generation iPhone, iWatch and new apps. Apple did want to assure the public no consumer information was accessed during the breach. Tom Neumayr, spokesman for Apple stated, “The website that was breached is not associated with any customer information. Additionally, customer information is securely encrypted.”

The big fruit company has been unable to confirm the amount of developers affected from the attack and continues to advise of the security measures it is taking to prevent this incident from happening again. Hack attacks against tech firms have grown considerably over the last year.

  • Facebook reported earlier this year its developer website was compromised with a zero day exploit to bypass the Java sandbox.
  • The same zero day exploit was aimed at Microsoft into a iOS developer website. Some users’ computers were accessed and information gleaned without notification, from a sophisticated exploit.
  • As well this year Twitter was hit with an attack that accessed over 250,000 user accounts. The jokers tweeted from Burger King’s account a message stating they had been purchased by McDonald’s.
  •  Now, Apple joins the ranks of the exploits at their developers’ site.

Interestingly enough, Guardian Express published an article titled, ‘Hackers Sell Vulnerabilities to Nations Around the World’ which detailed companies like Exodus Intelligence and ReVuln who exposed flaws from corporations and the government agencies for profit. All signs point to the possibility this was a crafted hacker job rather than a randomized situation from a political activist group or individual.

Apple is scrambling to get systems back into order and maintain the integrity of information. The developers’ site held confidential information in relation to the new iOS7 and the new operating system for Mac computers, the OS X Mavericks. It is unknown at this time from Apple what damages may have occurred from the attack. Developers are not overwhelmingly concerned about the hack, but an app developer for Apple, David Barnard founder of App Cubby stated he worried a bit about his company’s bank account “but from what I understand that data is stored in a completely separate system and was not compromised,” he stated. Let’s hope Apple and other tech firms foresee the exploit and take all measures to avoid flaws releasing personal information.

Angelina Bouc

Sources 1, 2



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