Apple is famous for its close to impregnable security. However, no system is failsafe. Even Apple devices and users sometimes fall prey to hacking. iPhones do get viruses. A common way is thru a scam called Apple ID phishing. To be told, phishing is held responsible for close to a third of all data breaches. Close to ten percent involve attempts to make away with someone’s Apple ID/password. Phishing and associated phenomena are all variations on a theme – the apple id hacked email scam.
Defining an Apple ID hecked email scam
A Kind of smishing phishing is a scheme in which hackers try to inveigle you into letting go of personal info, like Social Security numbers and passwords. They achieve this by sending texts, emails, and other message types that look as if they are coming from a legit firm. As a rule, these messages have a link that, upon being clicked, takes you to a site that’s spoofed, where your data may be stolen.
With an apple id hacked email scam – and we are focusing on phishing – hackers are in particular trying to get you to surrender your apple ID and password. Apple needs user IDs and passwords to access Apple services like the App Store, Apple Music, iMessage, iCloud, and FaceTime. When properly configured, iPhones are genuinely secure. That leaves just phishing as the one option for hackers and scammers.
Why is your Apple ID so sought after?
Your Apple ID account has all your contact, security and payment information. If hackers can make out your ID and password, they can dig deeper, gain private information for their criminal uses, or sell on the Dark Web. The hackers and scammers get access to your iCloud email, apart from the history of your music, app, movie rentals and purchases. Apart from an unfettered entree to your photos, documents, and files on the iCloud drive, hackers and scammers can even view movies on your account.
It is not unusual for hackers and scammers to steal data with $3.5 billion in one year. Here, the most common method observed is phishing.
How do Apple ID scams function?
Scammers have become very practical and will use any procedure available to them to get the hook onto your attention. Truly, ‘hook, line, and sinker is their modus operandi here. You show real interest in the phishing bait; these hackers and scammers try to phish for your vital info.
Spoofed texts and emails are the most common methods. They are the easiest to carry out. No real programming skills are required.
However, scammers will also home in on you via browser pop up notices, calendar invitations, and phone calls. As a rule, they try to lure you into clicking on a link or calling a phone number for legit sounding purposes. However, they are, in reality, attempting to either steal/get you to divulge your personal information. Frequently, scammers create a sense of urgency so that victims act impulsively to the message. They may even make up an ersatz Apple virus warning.
Types of apple id hacked email scams
Hackers are, without pause, coming up with new scams. However, some of the most recurrent ones are :
- Apple ID order receipt
Per this scam type, you will get an email that apparently is from Apple, saying that your ID has been used to make a purchase, as a rule with a PDF receipt attached as ‘proof’. The email will either ask you to confirm the item bought or submit payment for it. Either way, there are generally links that, if clicked, will take you to a fake Apple account management page. The attempt focuses on coaxing the Apple ID and password from you.
- Apple ID locked
The scam frequently works concurrently with the fake receipt scam. If you follow a spoofed email to a fake Apple page and then input your information, you may be greeted by a notification informing you that your ID has been locked due to suspicious activity. Subsequently, it will show you an ‘unlock’ button that requires you to cough up confidential info, like name, social security number, payment information, and answers to common security questions. Not infrequently, this message will come thru an iMessage alert stating your Apple ID has been locked since the ID is close to expiry.
The message could ask you to complete a form to unlock your account. Apple IDs can always be locked by a phone call placed directly to Apple. Apple IDs, be it be borne in mind, never ever expire.
- Apple support scam
Per his scam, you get a phone call from an apparently genuine Apple support phone number. However, the number has been spoofed. The scammers pretend to be from Apple on your answering the call, informing you your Apple ID or account has been compromised. To fix the issue, they will need your password and associated data. Sometimes, there’s an automated voice message asking you to dial a number for Apple Support instead of a human voice. Updates and details like approximate holding time are copied to a ‘t’. The human at the other end asks you to submit compromising information.
Apple, as a matter of policy, does not call you to notify you of suspicious activity. Therefore, they will not start a conversation. Rather you have to begin one. Vishing is another name for these types of phone scams.
- iPhone locked
If you get this cam thrown at you, in all likelihood, you have fallen prey to another Apple scam as well. In case hackers have long since gained access to your iCloud account, they could activate the ‘find my iPhone feature’, placing your device into lock mode, thus remotely locking it. Then you will observe a pop-up message on your phone, saying it will stay locked till the time you cough up a ransom.
You might get a spammy iCloud calendar invitation to an event/meeting with an unknown group/individual, frequently with promises of easy riches or drugs. Unfortunately, the iPhone calendar spam means you have exposed yourself to more frequent spasms of similar nature.
Spotting Apple ID hacked email scams
Scammers become more and more polished at making real McCoy lookalike email, texts, and sundry communications like the real deal. If you know what you are looking for, you are gnarly as good as protected.
- Spoofed address
Hover on the sender’s name in your inbox, to make note of the full email address. If the mail purports to be from Apple but the address is off by a letter or two, it is a phishing attempt in every likelihood.
- Nebulous greeting
Famed firms generally address you by your full name, and spammers use something generic like ‘dear friend’.
- Misspellings, grammar mistakes, typos
The hackers, scammers, and spammers are not as polished as they would themselves believe. Their messages are replete with spelling mistakes, bad grammar and typos. These indicate these messages as being from a body that’s less than professionals.
- ‘Cat on a hot tin roof’ urgency
The scammers will try to infect you with a sense of ‘cat on hot bricks’ nervous urgency. There will be an attempt at emotional manipulation.
Best practices to avoid apple id hacked email scams
Best practices aimed at avoiding Apple ID hacked email scams:
- Don’t ever share our Apple ID password with anyone, not even with those saying they are Apple people.
- Get the latest version update for your system always.
- Get your browsers updated.
- In built phishing shields with Chrome, making it one of the best browsers around;
- Antimalware on your devices is not irrational;
- Only ‘https’ sites are secure;
- Give each website a deservedly unique password.
We hope you will steer clear of phishing attempts. To report apple id hacked email scams, just drop a line to [email protected] Fake tech support phone calls should be reported directly to the Police. From settings, you can de-recognize any device that is not yours. Two-factor authentication proves useful on more than one occasion. Changing your password now and then is actually a good habit.