A hacker group has claimed to have obtained personal data from 12 million Apple iPhone and iPad users by breaching an FBI computer, raising concerns about government tracking, but the FBI said it never had the data.
The group called AntiSec, linked to the hacking collective known as Anonymous, posted one million Apple user identifiers on Monday purported to be part of a larger group of 12 million obtained from an FBI laptop.
The FBI initially had no comment on the reports, but later in the day issued a statement which cast doubt on the purported data breach, saying it never had the data in question.
"The FBI is aware of published reports alleging that an FBI laptop was compromised and private data regarding Apple UDIDs (unique device identifiers) was exposed," the US Federal Bureau of Investigation said in a statement.
"At this time, there is no evidence indicating that an FBI laptop was compromised or that the FBI either sought or obtained this data."
A tweet from the FBI press office said: "We never had info in question. Bottom Line: TOTALLY FALSE."
Peter Kruse, an e-crime specialist with CSIS Security Group in Denmark, said on Twitter that the leak "is real" and that he confirmed three of his own devices in the leaked data.
"Also notice that they claim to have fullname, addresses, phone numbers etc... Big ouch!" he tweeted.
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.