Cybersecurity researchers at VPN Check found that dozens of harmful and dangerous iOS apps have stayed in Apple's mobile app repository for months after being found.
The company says that in March 2021, an Avast antivirus company found 133 fake apps and told Apple about it. But VPN Check says that more than a year after the first report, 84 of those apps are still very much alive and well.
The apps include the photo and video editors, wallpaper apps, horoscope apps, phone cleaners, fake antivirus apps, and other similar products.
The apps might not be viruses or malware(opens in a new tab). They might not try to steal data, damage, or destroy the endpoint they are infecting. But they try to make the victims pay more (hidden fees, premium subscriptions, or other ways) and are hard to eliminate from devices.
Overall, VPN Check says these apps scam users out of at least $100 million yearly.
At the same time, the company is blaming Apple, saying that Apple won't act quickly to get rid of the bad apps from the store. VPN Check says that the Cupertino mobile giant still gets a cut of the fraudulent earnings and could lose a whole source of income if it doesn't act quickly.
"Apple might not want to take care of the problem," the company says. "Because the market for cell phones is already full, more big money is being made in the App Store. And clients who use Scam apps are great. They make a lot of money from their scams, and Apple gets some of that. Also, a lot of that money goes to running ads on the App Store, which Apple also gets to keep. Not too bad, as people at Apple like to say.
That's a serious accusation, so we'll see what Apple says. TechGru has contacted the company for comment, and we'll let you know what we find out.