Apple Mail flaw could pose risk to iCloud passwords

A researcher says he notified Apple in January but the flaw has yet to be patched

A flaw in Apple's iOS mail client could be used to trick someone into divulging their iCloud password.

A flaw in Apple's iOS mail client could be used to trick someone into divulging their iCloud password.

A security researcher says a vulnerability in Apple's mobile email application could be used to trick someone into divulging their iCloud password.

Prague-based Jan Soucek published proof-of-concept code that shows how he could send an email to someone with HTML code that resembles the iCloud login pop-up window. Soucek then receives an email containing the password.

The vulnerability allows remote HTML content to be loaded in an email, which replaces the content of the email message. Soucek wrote he then built a functional password collector using HTML and CSS. He also published a demonstration video.

He found the bug in January and notified Apple. The bug wasn't fixed in iOS 8.1.2, "therefore I decided to publish the proof of concept code here," he wrote. Apple officials did not immediately comment.

Soucek rigged the exploit code so that the bogus iCloud authentication window is only displayed once, which reduces suspicion, he wrote.

Apple has taken steps to strengthen the security of iCloud accounts after ones belonging to many celebrities were compromised last year.

The celebrity iCloud accounts may have been accessed after hackers guessed their usernames and passwords, possibly by answering the security questions Apple poses if someone loses their password.

It's also possible the celebrities fell victim to phishing attacks, which makes Soucek's finding even more worrying.

With iCloud credentials, it is possible to download the entire contents of an account to a new device, including photographs, text messages, call logs, address books, calendars and other information depending on what a person has chosen to store on iCloud.

Even if iCloud credentials are compromised, Apple has put other defenses in place. It now offers two-factor authentication and sends notifications when a new device is used to access an account or a password is changed.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags ApplesecurityExploits / vulnerabilities

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?