February 23, 2024

Steal your iPhone PIN, and steal millions: How criminals use Apple’s ecosystem

How do scammers take control of users’ digital lives using only their iPhone PIN? The criminals behind the vulnerability, which has been around for several years and will soon be mitigated by Apple with new anti-theft functionality, have always been kept in the dark until now. The Wall Street Journal has now succeeded with one of them To talk to a convicted iPhone thiefWho claims to have stolen more than one million US dollars in this way. As it turns out: the level of professionalism is high.


Aaron J. has already been convicted. The 26-year-old is serving several years in prison in Minnesota. According to his own statements, he managed to steal and sell $20,000 worth of iPhones and iPads in one good weekend. But that wasn’t all: He tried to take over the digital lives of each of the hijackers – including plundering their accounts. Problem: With the iPhone PIN, all options were open.

He (also) obtained the PIN through social engineering: If he didn’t see other people entering the PIN and/or recording it on video, he would ask them if he, as an aspiring rapper, would like to join them as a Snapchat contact who could to intervene. The Wall Street Journal wrote: “After a brief conversation, they handed the phone to Johnson, thinking he would enter his information and return it to them right away. Then I would say, ‘Hey, your phone is locked. What’s the passcode?’ Then the victims gave it to him and he disappeared c. With an iPhone.

He then changed the iCloud password within minutes — something that is still only possible with an iPhone PIN without knowing the old password. Then use your password to turn off Find My to stop possible tracking or remote scanning. Finally, it also changes the face of Face ID by using your iPhone PIN or adding another face. This then gave him access to secured banking apps, Paypal, etc., which he used to get money. Thanks to Face ID, he was also able to use Apple Pay cards stored on the device and then use them to shop at luxury stores. He particularly enjoyed purchasing additional Apple products to sell afterwards.

C then also made money from the stolen iPhone: he deleted the device and was able to sell it as used goods to a fence who then sold it in Asia. It was discovered c. Finally he got through the fence and only had to go to jail for 120 days. Regarding Apple’s new security features, Ji said there will definitely be new “tricks” to take over Apple devices later. The iPhone 15 Pro Max, Apple’s most expensive iPhone, is particularly popular as a stolen item. By the way, J. rarely steals Android models.


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