Hackers accused of ‘ransomware’ iOS attack arrested in Russia


Last month, a number of Apple users in Australia woke up to find that their iOS devices had been locked by an “Oleg Pliss,” and that they needed to pay a ransom if they wanted to continue using them. While a few people thought iCloud could have been hacked, Apple denied those rumors.

Now it seems that the hackers involved with the ransom demands have been detailed by authorities in Russia, according to a new report from the Sydney Morning Herald.

Aged 17 and 23, the alleged hackers are both residents of the Southern Administrative District of Moscow, and one has been previously tried for a similar case.

It is reported that they were caught on camera withdrawing the ransom money from an ATM. It has also been revealed that they gained access to Apple IDs via phishing scams. The targeted users were mainly in Australia and Russia, although a few also lived in the U.S. Affected users took to Apple’s support forum, along with social media, to discuss the issue.

In all, it goes to show why users should be careful when receiving unusual emails supposedly from Apple, as well as emphasizing the importance of the two-step ID verification process.

  • TeeJay2000

    Russian hackers ‘Pliss’ me off. Glad they were caught.

  • Aannddyy

    I’m surprised the Russian Gov’t gives a damn.

  • gary1son

    Glad to hear they were detailed. Apparently the Russian word for detained.

    • digitaldumdum

      The devil is in the detains.

      (with good-natured apologies to Luke Dormehl!)

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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