Apple executives have found no evidence to suggest Hollywood’s latest nude photo scandal was the result of a breach of the company’s iCloud security systems.
A mystery hacker leaked a number of explicit personal pictures featuring stars like Kate Upton and Jennifer Lawrence online on Sunday, prompting authorities at the FBI to launch an investigation to track down the cyber criminals responsible for what one publicist branded a “flagrant violation of privacy”.
Reports suggested the snaps had been illegally accessed via the celebrities’ personal iCloud accounts, which store details and back up copies of images from Apple iPhones, iPads and Macs, among other devices.
Apple bosses vowed to look into the leak, and on Tuesday, they confirmed some accounts had been hacked, but insisted their security remained intact.
Instead, they suggested hackers had managed to gain access to the iCloud accounts by working out stars’ log in details and passwords.
A statement released by Apple representatives reads: “When we learned of the theft, we were outraged and immediately mobilised Apple’s engineers to discover the source. Our customers’ privacy and security are of utmost importance to us.
“After more than 40 hours of investigation, we have discovered that certain celebrity accounts were compromised by a very targeted attack on user names, passwords and security questions, a practice that has become all too common on the Internet.
“None of the cases we have investigated has resulted from any breach in any of Apple’s systems including iCloud or Find my iPhone (app). We are continuing to work with law enforcement to help identify the criminals involved.”