Apple will alert users via email when someone tries to change an account password, restore iCloud data to a new device or adds a new device to an account, chief executive Tim Cook has said as the company looks to boost security.
Coming after hundreds of iCloud accounts belonging to celebrities were hacked, this tightening of security by Apple will roll out in two weeks’ time.
Apple denied that the passwords were leaked from company servers earlier this week, and has stated that access was gained when hackers either correctly answered the account’s security questions or used a phishing scam.
Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Cook said “When I step back from this terrible scenario that happened and say what more could we have done, I think about the awareness piece,” he said. “I think we have a responsibility to ratchet that up. That’s not really an engineering thing.”
He added that it may be down to humans more than technology to protect accounts, suggesting more could be done by the company to raise awareness that there could be hacks and that secure passwords are needed.
A broadening of Apple’s security system will now mean that, when the functionality is turned on, users will have to two of three items out of a password, a separate four-digit one-time code or the long code given to the user when they sign up, in order to access the account.
The company suggested that if the hacked celebrities used the ‘two-factor authentication’, the accounts may not have been breached.