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Apple IDs targeted in phishing scam through hacked Electronic Arts servers

The servers of video game publisher Electronic Arts have apparently been compromised, with a new phishing page set up with the intend of stealing Apple ID usernames, passwords, and credit card information.




Two websites using the ea.com domain used to host calendars have been hacked, and are being used to host a phishing site that appears identical to Apple's own website. The new phishing attempt was exposed on Wednesday by security research firm Netcraft.

On the page, users are asked to sign in with their Apple ID and accompanying password, though the page itself is hosted on ea.com. After a person enters their information, a second page asking for full name, credit card number, expiration date, verification code, date of birth, phone number, mother's maiden name, and other information.

Once a user has been tricked into submitting their details, they are redirected to the actual Apple ID website, in an attempt to play the left off as legitimate.

Netcraft was able to verify that the compromised server is hosted within EA's own network, and that the hacker who implemented the attack has installed and executed PHP scripts on EA's server.

Apple ID login credentials are a common target for hackers, as the information is used to access a variety of content offered by Apple from the App Store and iTunes.


Apple's Safari verifies a legitimate, secure login page.


As of last year, it was estimated that Apple has an account base of more than 500 million users with active credit cards tied to their Apple ID. That makes Apple's user base one of the largest and fastest growing groups among technology companies, second only to Facebook.

Social engineering techniques, such as phishing scams that appear to present a legitimate website, are one of the most successful ways for nefarious hackers to steal users' personal and financial information. Websites such as the one illegally hosted on EA's servers attempt to dupe unsuspecting users into handing over usernames, passwords, credit card information and more.

Presenting login forms under the "trusted" name of a brand such as Apple is another common practice in online phishing attempts. Users should always check that the URL of the current page they are visiting is associated with the service they believe they are logging into, and modern browsers such as Apples' Safari will also offer visual indications that the current website is legitimate, certified and secure.