You may have heard the story a few days ago of a hacker who took a few iPhone owners hostages andpretty much blackmailed them into paying a fee.

For those of you who don’t know the story, here is a quick summary, courtesy of Gizmodo.

Apparently all that it took to terrify many Dutch iPhone users was a “trivial” port scanning technique and “a modicum of networking know-how.” After the hacker gained access to the jailbroken phones with unchanged root passwords and SSH enabled, he sent the pictured message which led to a demand for a €5 PayPal payment and words of caution:

If you don’t pay, it’s fine by me, but remember, the way I got access to your iPhone can be used by thousands of others-they can send text messages from your number (like I did), use it to call or record your calls, and actually whatever they want, even use it for their hacking activities! I can assure you, I have no intention of harming you or whatever, but, some hackers do! It’s just my advice to secure your phone.

How to prevent any hacker to hijack your iPhone? Simply change the root password!

How to change your iPhone root password:

Step 1: If you haven’t installed MobileTerminal yet, go to Cydia and look for “MobileTerminal” and install the app, then reboot your iPhone.

Step 2: Lanch MobileTerminal and type su and hit return.

Step 3: You will be asked to enter your current password. Your default password is alpine so, type alpine and hit return.

Step 4: You are now inside your iPhone. We are now going to change the root password. Type passwd and hit return. Make sure you type passwd correctly.

Step 5: You will be aske to enter a new password. Type whatever you want for your new password and hit return.

Step 6: You will be asked to enter your new password again. Do that and hit return.

That’s it. You have successfully changed your iPhone root password. Make sure you don’t forget it!