Security

Two-factor authentication returns to iCloud

Ahead of its iOS 8 roll-out on Wednesday, Apple has revived the two-factor authentication security system for iCloud. Two-factor authentication will bring increased security to iCloud by allowing users to tie in a verified SMS number or connected device, making it harder for an unauthorized user to hack an iCloud account even if they have your password or log-in credentials.

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Apple beefs up device security, closes 'back door' exploits with iOS 8

Apple has made some important security upgrades with the iOS 8 gold master, making it harder to scrape data from iPhones and iPad. A number of iOS services are more guarded, and a couple of wireless vulnerabilities have been addressed. For example, third-party application data can no longer be dumped across Wi-Fi. This curtails much of the threat from wireless surveillance of an iOS device, according to iOS forenics researcher Jonathan Zdziarski:

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The future of personal security

Apple is responding to security concerns raised by many this past week as a result of massive release of stolen celebrity photos. While this is a good move by Apple that will increase security for users, it's important to understand what these changes do and don't mean for us.

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How to keep all your private photos off iCloud

While what happened to Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, and many other celebrities could arguably happen on any cloud storage service, many folks are pointing fingers at iCloud. While we don't believe iCloud is any less safe than any other backup service, we understand people wanting to take precautions. So if you'd prefer to not have any of your photos on iCloud, we can walk you through how to safeguard all your pics, nudies or not!

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iCloud security and personal responsibility

iCloud may not have been hacked but iCloud accounts are hackable. So are other online accounts. Why? Security is at constant war with convenience. Absolute security makes our data inaccessible to everyone, including us. Absolute convenience makes our data easily available to everyone, including those who would use it to harm us. The key to a workable system is balance, where a range of options are afforded and we choose and use them in a way that's best for us. That includes Apple giving us the options we need and making them as understandable as possible, and it includes us taking the time to understand them and implement them as best as we can. So what can we all do better?

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Lost your iCloud recovery key? Here's how to generate a new one!

If you've [enabled two-step verification]( for your iCloud account, you already know that if you ever forget your password, you'll need your iCloud recovery key in order to reset it. If you've lost the printout containing your key, you should immediately generate a new one in case your key falls into the wrong hands. As long as you know your current password, you can replace your iCloud recovery key in just a few minutes.

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Apple 'actively investigating' alleged celebrity iCloud account hacks

Yesterday a massive theft of photo data from celebrities made its way onto the internet. iCloud was named as the source of the data, though no information was provided as to how it was exploited. Regardless, it made headlines. Apple is aware and investigating.

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'BadUSB' malware highlights the danger of plugging random mystery drives into your computer

Another day, another apocalyptic prognostication of computer security doom, this time focusing on the omnipresent USB connection. It's called 'BadUSB', and it's a malware proof-of-concept created by security researchers Karsten Nohl and Jakob Lell that exploits a flaw in and resides in the firmware that controls the basic function of USB devices. The researchers claim that it's not a problem that can be patched, saying that they're "exploiting the very way that USB is designed," but in the end all they've done is highlight that you shouldn't go around plugging USB drives, devices, or whatnot that you don't trust into your computer.

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Russia wants Apple's source code to prove it's not used for spying

The Russian government has asked for security cooperation from Apple and enterprise services firm SAP. The proposal would see Apple handing over the source code for their products so Russia could inspect them for backdoors or defects that could be exploited by spy agencies like the NSA. Apple has repeatedly denied working with the NSA or other government agency to create such backdoors, but the Russian government, well, they're not wanting to take any chances.

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On iOS, 'backdoors', and the eternal war between security and convenience

Earlier this week forensic researcher Jonathan Zdziarski's work on security exploits in iOS pairing records and potential data leaks in diagnostic services went viral. Unfortunately, it was his slides, which used more provocative language and lacked the context of his talk, and not his pay-walled yet far more understandable journal article, that made the rounds. Tragically, many in the media pounced on the attention-getting potential, posting alarming articles that did nothing but spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) to a mainstream customer-base that deserves much, much better. Apple responded with comments to iMore on Monday, and with a Knowledge Base (KB) article on Tuesday. However, there's been no word yet on whether or not the exploits and potential data leaks will be closed and, if they will be, how soon. So, what does it all mean?

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