Apple, other tech firms hit by fake data requests used to sexually extort minors

Apple and other tech firms have been duped into providing sensitive personal data about their customers in response to fraudulent legal requests. The pilfered data has then been used to harass and even sexually extort minors, Bloomberg News reports citing “four federal law enforcement officials and two industry investigators.”

Apple, other tech firms hit by fake data requests used to sexually extort minors

William Turton for Bloomberg News:

The companies that have complied with the bogus requests include Meta Platforms Inc., Apple Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Snap Inc., Twitter Inc. and Discord Inc., according to three of the people.

The fraudulently obtained data has been used to target specific women and minors, and in some cases to pressure them into creating and sharing sexually explicit material and to retaliate against them if they refuse, according to the six people.

The tactic is considered by law enforcement and other investigators to be the newest criminal tool to obtain personally identifiable information that can be used not only for financial gain but to extort and harass innocent victims.

It is particularly unsettling since the attackers are successfully impersonating law enforcement officers. The tactic is impossible for victims to protect against, as the best way to avoid it would be to not have an account on the targeted service, according to the people.

MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, the current “system” is far too lax and a secure method to verify legitimate legal requests needed to be implemented years ago, but, since half the world is, by definition, below average IQ, don’t expect painfully evident logic to prevail anytime soon.

If only human IQs were 10 points higher across the board. God’s cruel joke.MacDailyNews, August 16, 2012

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