Australian Apple iDevices Being Gunned Down By Hackers
Owners of Apple devices located in Australia have been facing a rather pressing issue. Apparently they had found their phones being hijacked by hackers who had locked their iDevices and then demanded ransom in return for restoring them to their normal state.
iDevice owners living in Queensland, NSW, Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria have reported having their devices held hostage.
As expected, these meddlers of the web have used fake aliases to hack people’s devices and demanded ransom. The most common one being used was ‘Oleg Pliss’. When the phone was hacked a message that roams about the gist of the following phrase was displayed on the device.
Device Hacked By Oleg Pliss
This was not the exact message received to all the devices that were hacked but they were similar in nature and subject, alerting the owner of the device that it had been taken over by the hackers, and then these hackers demanded a ransom price of $50 to $100.
Oleg Pliss was just a screen name being used by the hackers. However, Oleg Pliss is a real person and coincidentally, he is a Software Engineer at Oracle.
The situation is an alarming one as affected users took to social media sites like Twitter to discuss the issue, many also went out to Apple Forums to talk about the matter at hand.
Below are some of the Tweets regarding the hacking crisis being faced in the outback:
my phone and ipad have been hacked overnight, message on screen says “your device has been hacked by oleg pliss… http://t.co/fFiwPksX7o
— Eva Goes (@Eva53) May 26, 2014
Ok just got a ‘found your phone’ email from Find my iPhone, then got a message on my phone to say it had been hacked. Should I be worried?
— Athanae Lucev (@athanaelucev) May 26, 2014
Has anyone had their phone weirdly hacked through unprompted use of Find My iPhone?
— Ms Mindy Chops (@mindychops) May 27, 2014
A slight bit of silver lining for some of the people that experienced the episode of the hacking was that the people who had put up a lock code on their device were able to unlock their phones after it was hijacked. However, one’s with no passcode on their phones were not so lucky as they were not able to unlock their device.
Following their secondary instincts, the people facing the problem called up their network providers and some even contacted Apple directly. Despite the efforts of the people to get their situation sorted out, they reported that the companies were not very helpful for them.
Below are some responses the people got from their network providers:
“Vodafone kept saying ‘iPhone can’t be hacked,’ ” one Apple user, “Shleighbo”, wrote.
“Rang Telstra and they said it is an Apple issue,” another, “georgie81”, said.
“The Optus tech support was not helpful,” said yet another user, “Bettybam”.
Comment is being sought from Apple.
A Telstra spokesman said the telco was aware of the reports and had referred the matter to Apple.
“In the meantime customers who need assistance can contact Apple Care,” the Telstra spokesman said.
Vodafone said no customers had reported the issue to its support centre.
Optus said if customers had any questions about their Apple devices, they “should speak directly to Apple”.
This is a tough one to get out of but it is recommended that infected users contact Apple directly to get their account back. If the hacker has set a passcode on iPhones, instructions on how to bypass it can be found at the Apple Support Community.
Well that is about it. Just make sure that you keep a check on your passwords throughout all and any of your accounts, and please make sure that you do not use the same password for all of your accounts because if one of them gets hacked then the others go along with it.