'May Be False Alarms': Apple Clarifies Threat Notifications Amid Opposition's 'State-Sponsored' Attack Claims

Swarajya Staff

Oct 31, 2023, 02:22 PM | Updated 02:22 PM IST

Several opposition leaders on Tuesday claimed they had received an alert from Apple.
Several opposition leaders on Tuesday claimed they had received an alert from Apple.

Amid the ongoing political controversy over claims by Opposition MPs that they received 'state-sponsored attackers' alerts from Apple, the US tech giant has issued a statement providing clarification on the nature of cybersecurity threat notifications.

This comes after several Opposition MPs, Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Priyanka Chaturvedi and TMC MP Mahua Moitra, reported receiving alerts on their iPhones warning them of potential "state-sponsored attackers."

The opposition's claims had quickly escalated into a political controversy, with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi alleging that these alerts were linked to their criticisms of industrialist Gautam Adani.

"As soon as Adani is touched, intelligence agencies, snooping are deployed," Gandhi said while addressing a press conference.

He added that party leaders like K C Venugopal, Pawan Khera, and several other opposition leaders got the alert.

Addressing the issue, Gandhi said multiple leaders alleged their Apple devices were being "hacked".

"...Earlier, I used to think number 1 is PM Modi, number 2 is Adani and number 3 is Amit Shah, but this wrong, number 1 is Adani, number 2 is PM Modi and number 3 is Amit Shah. We have understood the politics of India and now Adani ji cannot escape. Distraction politics is going on..." Gandhi said.

Following the political storm, Apple issued a statement in which clarified on the threat notifications,

"Apple does not attribute the threat notifications to any specific state-sponsored attacker. State-sponsored attackers are very well-funded and sophisticated, and their attacks evolve over time. Detecting such attacks relies on threat intelligence signals that are often imperfect and incomplete," the US tech giant said in its statement.

"It’s possible that some Apple threat notifications may be false alarms, or that some attacks are not detected," it added.

"We are unable to provide information about what causes us to issue threat notifications, as that may help state-sponsored attackers adapt their behavior to evade detection in the future," the company said.

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