There have been a number of Australian iPhone, iPad and Mac users getting their devices hacked, according to reports. Based on discussions from the Apple forums, it appears hackers are locking out users from their own devices via the Find My iPhone feature. The hackers are able to send the affected users messages and, in some cases, are demanding $50 and $100 payments sent to a PayPal account in order to unlock the devices. One user received a message on an iMac saying “Device hacked by Oleg Pliss.” Most individuals targeted report that all of the Apple devices they own have been hacked as opposed to just a single one.
Owners of Apple devices across Australia are having them digitally held for ransom by hackers demanding payment before they will relinquish control. iPad, iPhone and Mac owners in Queensland, NSW, Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria have reported having their devices held hostage. One iPhone user, a Fairfax Media employee in Sydney, said she was awoken at 4am on Tuesday to a loud “lost phone” message that said “Oleg Pliss” had hacked her phone. She was instructed to send $50 to a PayPal account to have it unlocked. It is likely hackers are using the unusual name as a front to get money from people. A real Oleg Pliss is a software engineer at tech company Oracle. A similar name is listed on LinkedIN as a banking professional in Ukraine, while there are others in Russia. Affected users in Australia have been discussing the issue on Twitter and Apple’s own support forum.