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Apple improves iCloud security following celebrity leaks

Apple has taken steps to improve the security of its iCloud service, following allegations that it was culpable for a high-profile leak of celebrity photographs last month.

The service will now require users of third-party applications, such as Microsoft Outlook and BusyCal, to enter app-specific passwords, which are generated by the user’s Apple account.

A reminder was sent out to those using two-step authentication yesterday, stating: “This is a reminder that starting tomorrow, app-specific passwords will be required to access your iCloud data using third party apps such as Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, or other mail, contacts, and calendar apps. If you are currently signed into to a third party app using your primary Apple ID password, you will be signed out automatically when this change takes effect. You will need to generate an app-specific password and sign in again”.

The company has informed users that their account can support up to 25 active app-specific passwords at any given time, which should give all but the most app-obsessed users plenty of wiggle room.

The company also went over how to generate the per-app passwords on its support blog:

“To generate an app-specific password: go to My Apple ID; select Manage your Apple ID and sign in; select Password and Security; click Generate an App-Specific Password and follow the steps on your screen.”

Getting improved security across a hugely popular service is a good thing, and it’s pleasing to see a company of Apple’s stature doing something to fix potential issues. It’s a shame it took some celebs naked selfies to get it moving though, after all, isn’t the security of our data just as valuable?