iCloud AltEmilio Herrera, a 32-year-old man from Chicago, this week pled guilty to hacking into more than 550 iCloud and Gmail accounts, many of which belonged to female celebrities, reports Deadline.

Investigators uncovered Herrera's activities when looking into a 2014 "Celebgate" incident that saw the private photos of dozens of celebrities leaked online after their iCloud usernames and passwords were obtained through phishing attempts.

Herrera used a phishing scheme to get the usernames and passwords of his victims, sending fake emails that appeared to be from Apple and Google. He stole credentials from April 27, 2013 to August of 2014, and used that information to access the iCloud and Gmail accounts of multiple celebrities.

Investigators have not found evidence linking Herrera to the actual leaks that saw nude photographs of celebrities uploaded to sites like reddit and 4chan, nor have they determined that Herrera shared the data that he found, but he did access sensitive photographs and videos.

Herrera pled guilty to a felony violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse act, and he now faces up to five years in federal prison.

Edward Majerczyk and Ryan Collins were previously found to be involved in the Celebgate incident and both pled guilty to similar charges.

When hundreds of nude photos of celebrities were leaked online in 2014, there was initial speculation that iCloud had been hacked, but following an investigation, Apple determined the celebrity accounts had been compromised by weak passwords. A Find My iPhone vulnerability that allowed multiple password entry attempts may have also been at fault.

Apple has since improved security by adding two-factor authentication to iCloud.com, introducing email alerts when an iCloud account is accessed on the web, and requiring app-specific passwords for third-party apps that access iCloud.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Tag: iCloud

Top Rated Comments

mariusignorello Avatar
83 months ago

compromised by week passwords ('https://www.macrumors.com/2014/09/02/apple-no-celebrity-icloud-breach/')
"week"?
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ouimetnick Avatar
83 months ago

compromised by week passwords ('https://www.macrumors.com/2014/09/02/apple-no-celebrity-icloud-breach/').
"week"?
Very week passwords indeed!
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jclo Avatar
83 months ago
"week"?
Sorry, typo. I've fixed it. Appreciate the heads up :)
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
marty11 Avatar
83 months ago
Ah, the fappening.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Alenore Avatar
83 months ago
it was good to know that celebs send nudies too... they're no different than the highschool perv
"Breaking news : Celebrities are human too!"
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
5105973 Avatar
83 months ago
Can someone post something of a politician nature so this makes sense?
Er...uh...I hope nude photos of Trump or Hillary get leaked someday...said no one ever.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Apple car wheel icon feature yellow

Apple Cancels Electric Car Project

Tuesday February 27, 2024 11:05 am PST by
Apple has canceled all plans to release an autonomous, electric vehicle, reports Bloomberg. Apple has been working on an Apple Car for more than a decade and invested millions of dollars into development before deciding it was not a viable project. Apple's Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams today told approximately 2,000 employees working on the Apple Car that the project was canceled,...
General Apps Messages

iOS 17.4 to Add This 'Groundbreaking' New Messaging Feature

Friday February 23, 2024 5:05 am PST by
With iOS 17.4, set to arrive in March 2024, Apple is bringing a new cryptographic security feature to iMessage called PQ3. This "groundbreaking" and "state-of-the-art" protocol provides "extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks," according to Apple. Let's break down what that means. Apple's iMessage service already supports end-to-end encryption, but security...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

Six Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Thursday February 22, 2024 4:20 am PST by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models concurrently, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different, and already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
iOS 17

iOS 17.4 Coming Soon With These New Features for Your iPhone

Monday February 26, 2024 6:08 am PST by
In a press release last month, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released in March, and the update includes several new features and changes for the iPhone. Key new features in iOS 17.4 include major App Store changes in the EU, Apple Podcasts transcripts, and an iMessage security upgrade. The update also adds new emoji and includes preparations for the launch of next-generation CarPlay...
iOS 18 Mock iPhone 16 Feature Gray

iOS 18 Rumored to Be Compatible With These iPhone Models

Tuesday February 27, 2024 6:31 am PST by
iOS 18 will be compatible with the iPhone XR, and thereby also the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max models with the same A12 Bionic chip, according to a post on X today from a private account with a proven track record of sharing build numbers for upcoming iOS updates. The post was spotted by MacRumors contributor Aaron Perris, and it has since been deleted. However, this was likely because the...
applearcade

Game Developers Describe 'Smell of Death' Around Apple Arcade

Monday February 26, 2024 7:24 am PST by
Some game developers are dissatisfied with Apple Arcade amid concerns about the subscription service's future, a new report claims. Sources speaking to mobilegamer.biz described a "smell of death" around Apple's games subscription service and noted the difference between the company's investment in TV and music, and its interest in games. "At the very top of the company there needs to be a ...