Alert of 30 'plucking' applications for iPhone - La Provincia

Cybersecurity company Sophos has discovered30 unethical applicationsaimed at mobile usersiPhoneWhat do they seekcharge extra costsusers through high subscriptions or internal purchases.

These applications, whichhave been installed on 3.6 million devicesand are present in theApp Storeofficial ofManzana, are examples of 'fleeceware' or 'pluckers' in English, as reported by the laboratories of SophosLabs in a statement.

Among the 30 'apps' in question areimage editors, horoscope readers, lucky phones, or future readersin the palm of your hand, as well as applications to scan QR codes or barcodes and facial filter applications.

"The main purpose of 'fleeceware' applications for iOS appears to be to charge users significant amounts with surcharges," he says.Jagadeesh Chandraiah, principal security researcher forSophosLabsand author of the report.

These applications have in some cases weekly paid subscriptions that reach $ 9.99, 9.20 euros in exchange, which is equivalent to $ 520 a year or 478 euros.

Sophos has previously warned of the presence of 'fleeceware' applications for Android phones, with 20 'apps' that in January 2020 had been installed on nearly 600 million devices through Google Play.

"The developers of these applications take advantage of the monetization practices widely used by legitimate free applications, but taking them one step further," according to Chandraiah, who indicates that while they are not officially malicious, they are unethical and take advantage of consumer trust.

These applications usually have free trials, but they are followed by subscriptions that add up to hundreds of euros a year and in-app purchases are necessary for the 'software' to work properly, instead of providing optional improvements as it should.

In most cases, 'fleeceware' 'apps' use ads within other apps to spread, and often have five-star ratings that may be false.

Sophos has advised users of a series of security measures to avoid this type of 'software', which include installing only applications from official App Store or Google Play stores and even on these platforms, carefully examining new ones or those that They have become known through advertisements.

Another important aspect for users is that they know how to cancel subscriptions, since it is not enough to delete the application from the device, and that they follow the instructions of the App Store or Google Play.


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