Attackers are able to remotely get into and lock Mac and iPhone devices using iCloud’s “Find My iPhone” feature, researchers said.
In addition, after locking the devices attackers are then turning around and demanding ransom payments.
Mac users said via their Twitter accounts their Apple devices ended up locked and all they see is the lock screen with a message asking them to pay a certain amount of money in Bitcoin if they want to receive the code to unlock the device, according to a report with MacRumors.
Apparently this is one of the fallouts from the Equifax hack or another data breach that exposed the passwords and email addresses of millions of users.
So, any hacker getting ahold of the credentials can sign into an iCloud account and remotely lock Mac or iPhone using Find My iPhone.
It doesn’t matter if the user has two-factor authentication enabled or not, because the hackers simply click on the “Find My iPhone” functionality available on the iCloud.com website to remotely lock the device, bypassing two-factor authentication.
One of the quick workarounds is to disable the Find My iPhone feature by going into Settings, press on your name if you’re running iOS 11, then access the iCloud settings and turn off Find My iPhone. Enter your password to disable it. On your Mac, you can disable Find My Mac from the iCloud panel in System Preferences.
The second thing the user needs to do to protect his or her iCloud account, and therefore your iPhone or Mac, is to immediately change the Apple ID password. Generate a new one using various tools at your disposal and keep it somewhere safe. Also, don’t forget to enable two-factor authentication if it’s not already active on your account.