Did you know that your Apple devices like your iPads and iPhones all have an identification number that is unique to you personally? Yeah, I didn't know that either. And did you know that if you have this number, called an UDID, you could potentially not only use the number to find out where a person who has that device is, but also their personal information, and you could even take over their Facebook and Twitter accounts? Yeah, neither did I. And did you know that someone went in and stole 12 million of these UDIDs that just happened (supposedly) to be sitting in the computer of an FBI special agent? Wha -- wha -- whaaaat?
That's right, it's bad enough that a hacker group (damn those hacker groups!) managed to infiltrate the laptop of a guy who worked for the FBI. I mean, hello? FBI? He's probably got a bunch of sensitive stuff on that computer. I hope his password wasn't FBIForRealz.
And then the group found a file. And the group says in that file was 12 million unique user numbers for Apple devices. The hacker group posted the numbers online but took out identifying information like names, phone numbers, and addresses. (No Social Security information is attached to these numbers.)
So why did the hacker group do this? Because they wanted to make the point that the government has a lot of personal information about us -- and even that they may be tracking us through the devices we buy. Neither the government nor Apple has responded to the hack yet, but I think they got lots a splainin' to do if these numbers really were on this guy's computer!
When you think about it, this makes a great sci-fi flick. People willingly -- even eagerly -- wait in line for days to acquire a new government tracking device. Because, you know, they can watch cat videos and play games on it. Only this sounds kind of ... REAL.
If you want to know if your unique number was in this FBI dude's computer and was leaked to the web, you can enter it here.
Are you worried the government is tracking you by phone or iPad?
Image via Sean McAntee/Flickr