Sophos Finds 30 iOS FleeceWare Apps Overcharging iPhone Users

British security software and hardware company Sophos just discovered a collection of iOS FleeceWare apps available at Apple’s AppStore. These fleeceware apps target iPhone Users with costly subscriptions or unscrupulous in-app purchases.

There are many dangers lurking across the internet. Consequently, security measures are being continuously placed so those with malicious intentions can’t get their way. However, we might have been too ‘lax’ in assuring if what we’re downloading is as secure as we think. Sophos is emphasizing that as users, it’s important we stay vigilant against scams and unethical practices.

A published Sophos Labs report, Don’t Let Fleeceware Sneak into Your iPhone showed iOS apps with unethical practices to scam unsuspecting users with surprising charges. These apps would even sometimes charge weekly subscriptions of approx. PHP 500.00 monthly.

It’s a wide array of apps as Sophos revealed 30 fleeceware they’ve found out persisting in the App Store. These apps range from image editors, horoscope/fortune telling/palm reader, QR code/barcode scanner, and face filter apps. They look innocent and secure but because of this, they hold about 3.6 million downloads.

Sophos started their research on “fleeceware” apps with the Google PlayStore back in September 2019. By then, these apps already garnered an alarming 600 million downloads as PlayStore data suggest.

Sophos reminds everyone how to avoid accidentally installing fleeceware apps. Make sure to remember these points and steps in avoiding scam apps:

  • Make sure to only install apps from trusted app stores such as the Apple App Store and Google Play
  • Even so, remain vigilant in installing apps especially those that are newly- added, unfamiliar, and seen through in-app advertising
  • Understand how to cancel subscriptions because deleting the app is not enough (Learn more on Apple’s support page and Google’s Play store support page)
  • Get a legitimate security app alerting you of risky apps like Sophos Intercept X for Mobile available for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play

More than ever, it’s important to steer clear from potential cyber harm! Learn more with Sophos with their SophosLabs Uncut article.

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