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Fix Your ICloud Leak Fast, if Hacked or Not, suggests Mashable Report

More than 101 Hollywood celebrities such as Jennifer Lawrence, Selena Gomez, Kate Upton, Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, Kaley Cuoco, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Hilary Duff, Vanessa Hudgens, Teresa Palmer, Kate Bosworth, Michelle Keegan, Victoria Justice, Emily Browning and others faced an embarrassing moment on Sunday when their private nude photos appeared on the image-based bulletin board of 4Chan website.

The hacking could be due to a flaw in Apple iCloud’s security wall or that it was automatically sending the deleted photos elsewhere for secret storage. However, Masahble has given a detailed HOW TO advice on fixing the issue as below:

Is Photo Stream uploading all your photos to iCloud?

In your Photos app, you’re probably familiar with the Camera Roll, which are the photos you’ve taken that are physically stored on your device. But if you’ve enabled Photo Stream, you’ll also see a My Photo Stream album.

Screenshot of My Camera Roll and My Photo Stream on iPhone

Image: Screenshot from iPhone Tarn Susumpow

The photos in My Photo Stream are stored on Apple’s iCloud servers. Apple stores photos you’ve taken in the last 30 days. This can be a useful way to sync photos between devices; if you take a photo on your iPhone, it’ll also show up on your iPad and Mac or PC. It’s also a good automatic backup should you lose your phone after that magical vacation.

See also: What’s the Difference Between My Photo Stream and Camera Roll?

But it does mean that these photos are in the cloud, and potentially vulnerable.

How to disable Photo Stream

If you’re worried about security and would rather disable Photo Stream now, open the Settings app on your device, then tap "iCloud." Tap "Photos" (or "Photo Stream" in iOS 6), then manually switch off the Photo Stream feature. (If anything important is backed up in Photo Stream, make sure you’ve backed it up elsewhere first.)


Image: Screenshot from iPhone Kyli Singh

You’ll also want to switch Photo Stream off on all devices you want protected. (See our earlier article on Photo Stream for more tips on enabling or disabling it on all devices.)

How to just delete a photo or two

Is there a certain kind of photo that’s causing you concern? Perhaps you don’t want to go as far as disabling the whole Photo Stream service — just remove a few risque shots here and there. Simple — hit edit while you’re in Photo Stream, tap the offending photos, and delete them.

Result: the photos in question will be gone from the Photo Stream, gone from all devices except the ones you took them on, and most importantly gone from iCloud. If you want to delete all traces of a photo, you’ll have to go the extra step and delete it from the Camera Roll on the original device too.

How secure is your iCloud password?

Because the hackers were likely able to guess the passwords linked to certain accounts — using a relatively simple tool, as reported by TheNextWeb — it once again illuminates the need for strong, unique passwords.

To change your password, visit My AppleID. Click "Manage your Apple ID" > "Password and Security" > "Change Password."

Apple requires users to create a password with eight characters, a number and both an uppercase and lowercase letter, but you’ll want to be creative in how you approach the login.

What were once considered clever strategies — using symbols, capitalizations, the number 3 in place of the letter "e" — are old tricks. The best thing to do now is pick a different password for each account you use — you wouldn’t use the same key in all of your locks, and the same goes for passwords.

Security firm McAfee suggests avoiding password words that include personal information, like your birthday, pet’s name or a favorite color, because they’re easy for hackers to guess. Passwords should also be long — at least 14 characters — and when you use common replacements (like symbols and letters), make sure they’re not tacked on at the end; scatter them throughout.

The best suggestion is to use a combination of dictionary words that aren’t related to each other, such as “catfolderspaceshuttle," to create a long password that’s easy for you to remember but almost impossible for anyone else to guess.

You’ll want to avoid common phrases and idioms like “icameisawiconquered,” which are easier to guess. But ultimately, a long password made of words could foil hackers who have plenty of time to automatically guess all the shorter possibilities.

Turning on two-factor authentication

One increasingly common security step you can take is two-factor authentication, a feature that Apple already offers for its iCloud service. This login verification is like double-locking your door at night to decrease the chances of an intruder breaking in, but it takes an extra step or two to get into your account.

Each time you want to log into your iCloud account anew, Apple will send a code to your phone or other Apple device. The code changes after each login attempt, so hackers would have to be in physical possession of your iPhone to know the code.

To set this up, visit My AppleID. Click "Manage your Apple ID" > "Password and Security" > "Two-Step Verification" to begin the process.


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