Fake Alexa App Tops Apple App Store Before Being Removed
Apple has been very strict with their App store and regularly checks on security of Apps that they enlist. A fake Amazon Alexa setup tool for iOS has become the sixth most downloaded app in the Apple Store’s Utilities category. However, this is not an Amazon madeApp but a third party App. Amazon Alexa based devices have been a smash hit since their launch. During Christmas this year Amazon Alexa servers failed in Europe due to an overload of users. This is a clear indication that a lot of users are calling out to the virtual assistant on their phones and their echo devices. This fake App seems to be taking advantage of the high popularity of Alexa.
The App itself is very basic and looks nothing like the actual Alexa App. The App asks for the user’s IP Address, the serial number of the device and a name. The App has successfully fooled a lot of people and made it to the top charts on the Apple App Store. The app reportedly can access a large amount of the user’s data such as IP addresses, browser information, referring/exit pages and URLs, clickstream data, domain names and so on. The App may also be able to track the user’s location which could lead to larger privacy concerns.
While the Alexa Setup app has now been removed from the App Store. It is only time before something like this happens again. That of-course, if Apple doesn’t strengthen its already strong barrier of entry for Apps.