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Apple Confirms iTunes Account Hacks, Beefs Up Security

Gordon Kelly


Apple Confirms iTunes Account Hacks, Beefs Up Security

I mentioned in our Apple Finally Admits iPhone 4 Antenna Problem story (wow, those comments just keep on coming) that there had also been widespread reports iTunes accounts had been hacked. This caused some alarm to you guys, so thankfully Apple has stepped forward with a clarification.

Speaking to the New York Times (yes, why put such news on your official site?!) Apple spokesperson Trudy Muller confirmed there had indeed been a successful hack on iTunes accounts, but that only 400 users had been affected. She declined to elaborate on how the accounts were compromised, but said Apple servers holding credit card data were not attacked. "There was no hack into iTunes" she added.

The incident began when Vietnam-based developer Thuat Hguyen broke into user accounts to in order to make them buy his apps. Consequently 42 of his apps appeared in the top 50 of Apple's book category which suggests either these 400 accounts were taken to the cleaners or Apple's book category isn't very popular yet.

Given the incident is likely only to encourage other unscrupulous types to have a go, Muller confirmed Apple will boost its iTunes security with users required to enter their credit card security code more frequently. Apple will not be refunding affected customers, instead saying the fraud is to be dealt with by their card companies – harsh, but in character. The incident isn't the first in iTunes' history with voucher codes compromised early last year.

Expect copycat attempts to hack the likes of Android Marketplace and Nokia's Ovi store – actually there's probably little point in going after the latter right now

In related news ars technica has found Android 2.2 to "demolish" iOS 4 in browser JavaScript performance with scoring 5,795.2 to iOS 4's 10,902.1 (lower is better) in SunSpider and 67 to 287 in V8 (higher is better). Android 2.2 and iOS 4 are both major improvements on their predecessors, but mobile Safari certainly hasn't had much love and attention recently. Then again, the same could be said of Android's media player.

Source: New York Times

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