Scam Apps Sold on the Apple App Store Without Oversight

The attorneys at McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP, are investigating the need to bring a class action lawsuit against Apple for their failure to monitor the applications available on their store, many of which have turned out to be scams.

As the company ensuring the App Store remains a safe place for customers to browse and purchase third-party apps, consumers trust Apple to carefully vet and verify each app offers exactly what is advertised for a reasonable price. Unfortunately, certain scam apps have snuck under Apple’s radar. In fact, scam apps available on the Apple App Store have cheated consumers out of $48 million.

If you or someone you know has used an app downloaded from the App Store that does not function as advertised or has gouged prices to allow access to certain basic app functions, you may have legal recourse. Contact McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP, by completing the form or calling 866-216-3305 today to schedule your free consultation.

If you or someone you know has used an app downloaded from the App Store that does not function as advertised or has gouged prices to allow access to certain basic app functions, you may have legal recourse. Contact McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP, by completing the form or calling 866-216-3305 today to schedule your free consultation.

Scam Apps From the App Store Could Cost You

There are several types of scam apps on the App Store. One variety can be purchased or downloaded for free but does not function as it was advertised on the store. Another type charges an exorbitant subscription fee for an inferior product. Meanwhile, some scam apps use fake reviews to appear more legitimate and advance in the App Store rankings. Consumers deserve to feel confident and secure in their app store purchases.

While several scam apps have been removed by Apple, it seems they’ve only acted when directly called out on social media. Despite the removal of some scam apps, Apple has not yet acted to ban the guilty app developers from the app store.

Some of the most popular scam apps on the App Store include:
  • Star Gazer+ : This app cost $10 per week and showed users incorrect information.
  • Keywatch: This claimed to be a keyboard app for an Apple Watch but provided subpar functionality for an outrageous $8 per week.
  • Roku Remote Control – Roki: This app claimed to work as a remote control for the Roku TV streaming service but was not functional – all this while charging customers $5 per week.
  • TinyLab’s QR Code Reader: While tricking users into downloading a non-functional QR code scanner, this developer secretly signed the app users up for an annual subscription costing $156 per year.
  • Shock My Friends and affiliated apps: These apps claim to shock friends as a prank while only vibrating the phone. These cost between $5 and $8 and are actually covers for HiddenAd trojans which bombard the user with ads while not using the app.
  • ThemeZone: Similar to the Shock My Friends family of apps and created by the same developer, this app offers animated backgrounds for an upfront cost of $2 but keeps some options behind a paywall at the cost of $8. Unbeknownst to users, this is another HiddenAd trojan carrier. Plus, iPhone already offers animated backgrounds for free.
  • Trezor: A true nightmare for Bitcoin investors, the Trezor app on the App Store is actually a copycat scam made to look like the official app of the Trezor hardware used to store cryptocurrency. Once downloaded for free, this app immediately drains its users’ crypto wallets.

Stay One Step Ahead of Scams

McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP, has been the leading consumer litigation firm in the Inland Empire for decades. Our experienced team of Class Action attorneys has reclaimed millions in verdicts and settlements for wronged consumers throughout California. With success against Fortune 500 companies like Hyundai, Wells Fargo, and more, we are confident we can secure positive resolutions for all our clients.

If you were the victim of a scam app you downloaded from the Apple App Store, we can help you get justice. Schedule your free consultation by filling out the form or calling 866-216-3305 today!

Attorney Handling this Case

Portrait of Elaine S. Kusel, Partner of McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP
Partner
Elaine S. Kusel

Elaine S. Kusel, who joined the firm in 2008, is a partner of McCune Wright Arevalo, LLP, and leads the firm’s New Jersey office. As a nationally-renowned class action attorney, she performs a significant role in the firm’s Consumer Fraud Class Action division.

After college, Ms. Kusel spent eight years working in the U.S. House of Representatives, where she eventually served as Legislative Director and Counsel to a Member of Congress serving on the House Commerce Committee.

After graduating from law school, her practice had included fraud litigation, mass torts, and international human rights law. In one notable case, Abdullahi v. Pfizer, Ms. Kusel represented Nigerian children enrolled in a clinical trial by Pfizer without their families’ informed consent. In another, Gutierrez v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., her work helped secure a $203 million-dollar class action verdict for unfair bank overdraft fees. Ms. Kusel helped to lead the effort to uncover the financial fraud of Volkswagen, leading to a $40 million-dollar settlement on behalf of the citizens of the State of Arizona in the emissions fraud scandal.

Have you been the victim of a scam app from the Apple App Store?