iOS 10 Spying Possible With iCloud Backups

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A scary piece from Motherboard brings to attention a tool for iOS 10 spying. A company called Mobistealth sells a special monitoring tool that can pull data from iCloud backups. And the device making the backups doesn’t need to be jailbroken for Mobistealth’s software to  work.

iOS 10 Spying On iCloud

Using the software requires the user to have the victim’s Apple ID and password. This isn’t a mass monitoring tool, but that doesn’t make it less dangerous. A malicious person could use tricks, physical force, or other threats to get your passcode. Mobistealth’s website notes:

“Keeping tabs on the online activities of kids and employees on all iOS devices has gotten even simpler as jailbreak is no longer a prerequisite for Mobistealth to work.”

The tool monitors call logs, contact lists, and can obtain photos, read WhatsApp conversations, and remotely track you using GPS. Other apps it can log include WeChat, Kik and LINE. The company markets the tool for business owners who want to monitor employees, and parents wanting to monitor their kids. However, a YouTube video with a Mobistealth referral link markets the tool for “spying on a cheating spouse.”

entering a passcode on iphone

Entering a passcode

When Motherboard contacted Mobistealth and asked if a person needs the legal consent of the victim, or if you can use it without their consent, a representative said “Yes, you can do that.”

What You Can Do

Although iCloud backups are certainly convenient, it also means that your data is out of your control. The alternative is to use iTunes to back up your iDevices. While it won’t stop someone from coercing your password out of you, at least the monitoring tool from Mobistealth won’t work without an iCloud backup.

2 Comments Add a comment

  1. If I read this correctly it’s not anything on the iCloud backup. Only particular apps are vulnerable. Is it safe to assume that Pages documents or Numbers documents are safe? PDF files? Other documents? Keychain?

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