Apple is having a great year, but it has just turned upside down because a serious new warning has been issued for every iPad and iPhone user.
U a series of tweets (via MacRumors), developer Costa Elefherious has exposed a shocking flaw in the Apple App Store that allows fraudsters to defraud iPad and iPhone owners of millions of dollars using Apple’s own in-app purchase system. Moreover, Apple actually benefits from these applications.
In its tweets, Elefherious highlights the example of ‘Privacy Assistant: StringVPN’ which MacRumors notes ranks high today in the 32nd place in the App Store Utilities category. Despite the developer registering his address as a blank website, using hundreds of apparently fake reviews and numerous real users who leave comments trying to warn others that it is a scam, Elefherious states that the app withdraws more than $ 1 million a month – of which Apple is cutting .
And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Corresponds to Elefherious, another user reveals reported to Apple a scam called ‘TOR Browser Evil Onion’ ‘more than a month ago’ and again, despite hundreds of apparently false reviews and user warnings that it was trying to extort money, it remains active. How Elefherious commented “Wake up, @Apple”
It’s getting worse. Back in February, Elefherious warned that it had found clones of its own app, FlickType (Apple Watch Keyboard), which cheated users with subscriptions of up to $ 8 a week for non-functional apps. He even wrote a thread at the time “How to spot a $ 5 million a year scam on @AppStore, in 5 minutes” and pointed to the Star Gazer + app as a clear example of that. Despite numerous warnings in the review section that Star Gazer + is a scam, the two-month app is also still alive.
How do these scams bypass Apple’s App Store algorithm? According to Eleftheriou, it’s not hard: copy a successful app and pay for hundreds of fake five-star reviews, that’s it. Eleftheriou even expires that enough fake five-star reviews can earn these “Apple Recommended” pop-ups on Safari.
If there is a silver lining, Elefherious’s struggle is to find an ally. Ruby on Rails and Basecamp founder David Heinemeier Hansson Retweeted Tweet Elefherious’s warning today reads: “Costa is constantly finding these shameful scams in the Apple App Store. They all work on Apple’s billing platform. Obviously, just simply quitting business is not enough to ensure Apple is safe. It’s almost like it’s just a point of conversation, not an action! “
For Apple, this must now become an action point. The company is strongly marketed based on its commitment to user safety and began releasing the App Store late last year under the slogan “Applications you love. From a place you can trust. ”
I have contacted Apple and will update this post if I receive a response.
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