Hacker activists Anonymous sort of hacked Apple over the weekend, not to disrupt the iTunes store or to break into iCloud, but just to make a point.
That point is, quite simply: “We could attack Apple if we wanted to. But right now, we don’t want to.”
Anonymous posted a brief warning on Twitter on Sunday. The link in it pointed to text allegedly showing usernames and passwords for 27 logins on Apple’s abs.apple.com server.
The post included the hashtag #AntiSec, suggesting the attack was part of the wider series of anti-security operations by Anonymous and the recently-disbanded LulzSec group.
If nothing else, the rash of security stories that have made it to the front pages of the mainstream media in recent weeks and months are evidence that the public perception of data security is rapidly changing. It used to be considered something to be left to the geeks, because no one else understood or cared.
Most people still don’t understand it. But more and more are starting to care, now that they’ve realized their bank accounts, their online shopping and browsing, their personal data, their health records, almost everything they do, is done and stored online.
The movement isn’t just a wake-up call to ordinary folk, it’s a wake-up call to businesses and governments. If they haven’t already done so, senior executives and managers everywhere need to be summoning their team and posing the question: Is our stuff secure enough? If not, how do we make it so? That’s a good thing for all of us.