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Apple tech used to put hacked apps on iPhones

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 01:55s - Published < > Embed
Apple tech used to put hacked apps on iPhones

Apple tech used to put hacked apps on iPhones

Reuters has found that software pirates hijacked technology designed by Apple to distribute hacked versions of Spotify, Angry Birds, Pokemon Go, Minecraft and other popular apps on iPhones.

Stephen Nellis reports.


Apple tech used to put hacked apps on iPhones

Hacked and modified versions of popular apps like Spotify or Minecraft are showing up on Apple's tightly controlled iPhone.

Ever since Apple debut the app store in 2008 it's tried to persuade consumers that the iPhone is more secure than rival phones running the Android operating system because Apple reviews and controls all of the software that can be put on the iPhone through the app store.

But a Reuters examination has found that people can download modified versions of things like Spotify, Minecraft and Roveo's Angry Birds game titles onto those iPhones completely outside of Apple's control.

What these developers are doings is misusing Apple's program for businesses to be able to distribute internal applications to their own employees in order to push out versions of apps to consumers that do things like this.

There's a free version of Microsoft's Minecraft game that normally would cost you seven dollars if you downloaded it through the app store.

So these hacked and modified versions of popular apps are costing both Apple and the maker of those apps real money.

Now this program has also been misused by Google and Facebook.

A few weeks ago Apple briefly booted them out of the program after it found that they were using it to distribute data-gathering research apps to every day consumers.

Reuters found that it's something like a game of whack-a-mole.

During the course of reporting this story Apple actually shut down some of these illicit apps distribution services and then they came back and were running again within days or a few hours in some cases.

For most consumers who stick to the app store there's no danger here.

However for users who do venture out there is a big risk.

The system being used here can actually take data off of your phone and send it to unknown actors.

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