The recent discovery of a malware application for sale in the Google and Apple app stores is disturbing to me. We should be able to trust big name companies like Apple and Google to only sell us legitimate, safe applications for our smartphones. Is that too much to ask?
The recent revelation that both stores were selling an application called “Find and Call” for Android and iPhones indicates that these companies are not vetting the software sold in their stores. This software was developed in Russia, home of most of the cyber criminal organizations in the world…and no one saw fit to test it out before offering it in their stores. Incredible, simply incredible.
“Find and Call” is an application designed to make it easier for a smartphone user to call someone who’s in their contact list, without knowing their phone number. It is supposed to use the information the phone has stored for the contact and then search the Internet for the person’s phone number and call it.
However, the app has an additional functionality that’s not part of the marketing hype for the product. It also steals the user’s phone book data and uses it to spam their contacts. That’s outrageous, and shouldn’t be tolerated from any software dealer, especially two big names like Google and Apple. These companies have the resources available to have a quality check done on every piece of software they sell…before it goes on the shelf. In this case, that was not done. Consequently, both companies have received a black eye from the publicity surrounding this issue, and have subsequently pulled “Find and Call” from their stores. I hope a lesson was learned by Apple and Google that the quality of their apps should not be taken for granted, and by users to not blindly trust the applications they buy.
My recommendation to future purchasers of apps from any app store is to do some research on the app before buying it. And I would not buy an app that had only been for sale for a short period of time. Let someone else “test” it out before you buy it. There are usually user reviews for the apps that have been around awhile that will give you some additional information on its worthiness.
As always, I appreciate your comments on this subject…so please do. And be careful out there…it’s extremely dangerous these days.
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Home computing is a blast…keep it safe, productive and enjoyable.
lubicp(at)yahoo.com and @paulsinternet on Twitter.