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According to a report from Bloomberg, Apple and Meta handed over private user information to hackers posing as police officers. Some of this data included addresses, phone numbers, and IP addresses of affected individuals.
According to the article, the two companies fell for this deception in mid-2021 by considering the request for emergency data sent by cybercriminals to be real. This type of requirement is a sort of legal procedure with which security agents can obtain data from a user in order to carry out an investigation.
The emergency data request (EDR) does not require a court order, since it is considered urgent and is carried out when there is a life or death situation in most cases. In this way, companies are obliged to share their customers’ data when requested (and as long as it is verified that the requirement is legal).
The Bloomberg report indicates that the hackers may have sent the false emergency data requests through real police addresses, for which they must have forged the signatures of the agents.
It is believed that those responsible for this attack would be hackers belonging to a group known as the Recursion Team, which has minors from different territories such as the United Kingdom and the United States among its ranks.
“We block known compromised accounts from making requests and work with law enforcement to respond to incidents involving allegedly fraudulent requests, as we have done in this case,” Meta company spokesman Andy Stone explained.