Seven things for PR pros to know Tuesday morning, 9.2.2014

Apple, FBI investigate hacking of celebrity photos; Ketchum work with Gazprom ends; Uber shut down in Germany; Muir steps into anchor role at ABC News; Fast-food workers plan Thursday strike.

1. Both the FBI and Apple said Sunday that they are investigating reports that a security flaw in iCloud was exploited by hackers to expose personal nude photos of celebrities including Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton.

Apple has reportedly fixed the bug that is being blamed for giving hackers a route to celebrities’ photos in the cloud.

The incident has raised questions about the security of the cloud, both in terms of personal photos and documents, but also for its business use. The timing is also poor for Apple, which is reportedly planning to unveil a payments system for the iPhone in conjunction with Visa, MasterCard, and American Express that would turn the device into a "mobile wallet."

Celebrities reacted to the hackings on Twitter over Labor Day weekend.


2. Ketchum is no longer working with Gazprom, the energy giant controlled by the Russian government, according to a Sunday story in The New York Times. However, it is continuing its work with the Russian government even as that country’s role in the conflict in Ukraine has reportedly escalated. Former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul told the Times that Russia no longer cares about what other countries think of it, saying, "They decided, OK, we’ve had enough of these guys, let’s not worry so much about our reputation."

3. Uber has been banned across Germany by a Frankfurt court, which issued a temporary injunction against the tech-driven car service on Tuesday, saying its drivers lacked necessary commercial permits. Last month, Uber hired former Obama for America campaign manager David Plouffe to lead communications, branding, and public policy.


4. David Muir is taking over the anchor’s chair for ABC World News Tonight this week. Other than the fact that he's 40 years old, Muir is a break from the traditional evening news host. For one, he plans to get away from the anchor’s desk itself as much as possible.


5. Fast-food workers from chains including McDonald’s and Burger King are planning to strike on Thursday, citing the need for better wages and healthcare plans. This time, organizers have invited home-care workers to join the latest round of civil disobedience.


6. Michael Sam was not among the players signed to the practice squad of the St. Louis Rams after he was cut by the team on Saturday. One NFL player, Buffalo Bills center Eric Wood, blamed ESPN and its report on whether or not Sam was showering with his teammates for that. Rams players and coaches had expressed displeasure with the sports network over the report.


7. Texas Governor Rick Perry’s official Twitter account posted a tweet on Sunday calling District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, with whom Perry is in a drawn-out legal dispute, "the most drunk Democrat in Texas." The tweet was quickly deleted, with the account calling it "unauthorized." 

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