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Showing posts with label Apple Store. Show all posts

Is Apple's Monopoly Making Its Security Vulnerable?

It's a well-known fact that Apple’s devices are undoubtedly way safer than any other company’s products, however, in recent research analysis, many reports claimed it to be a myth. 

According to the experts, Apple’s complex process of downloading apps has created a notion of added security but seemingly such is not the case, as revealed in deeper examinations. 

Reportedly, around 2% of the top-grossing iOS apps, are in some way, scams. Customers of several VPN apps, which protect users’ data, have complained against Apple App Store – saying that their devices are contaminated by a virus that tricks them to download and pay for software that they don’t need. 

An illegal QR code reader app that remains for a week on the store tricks users into paying $4.99. Moreover, some apps even mock themselves as being from big global organizations such as Amazon and Samsung. 

Apple always maintained its exclusive command on the App Store and describes this as its policy which is essential for customer’s sensitive personal credentials. Apple has a monopoly in the App market in terms of customer trust. However, some analysts said that this is indeed the biggest problem that there is no competition against this giant in the market, if some companies will come with alternatives then– as a matter of fact – Apple will invest more money in strengthening their security measures. 

“If consumers were to have access to alternative app stores or other methods of distributing software, Apple would be a lot more likely to take this problem more seriously,” said Stan Miles, an economics professor at Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia, Canada. 

As per the statistics, that Apple generates huge profit from the App store; around 30 percent of its revenue is constituted by the App store. 

Apple spokesperson Fred Sainz said in a statement that, “We hold developers to high standards to keep the App Store a safe and trusted place for customers to download software, and we will always take action against apps that pose a harm to users…” 

“…Apple leads the industry with practices that put the safety of our customers first, and we’ll continue learning, evolving our practices, and investing the necessary resources to make sure customers are presented with the very best experience.”

GasBuddy Jumps to No. 1 on Apple Store After Colonial Pipeline Shutdown


Someone’s loss is someone else’s gain – this proverb perfectly fits in the scenario of GasBuddy. GasBuddy, a popular fueling app that allows users to identify when a station is out of fuel, is the most downloaded app on US Apple devices amid a run-on gas caused by a cyberattack on a critical pipeline. The rapid surge came after the company activated its emergency fuel availability tracker feature, used typically to help people find where there is gas after a natural disaster such as a hurricane.

According to the mobile analytics firm App Annie, the company’s app rose from the 900th most popular in the App Store last week to No. 1 on Wednesday. In the Google Play store that serves many Android devices, GasBuddy has risen to 24th. 

The Colonial Pipeline reopened on Wednesday after being hit by a ransomware attack last Friday. The pipeline delivers about 45 percent of the gas on the East Coast. The cyberattack caused long lines and outages at gas stations in the Southeast because of distribution problems made worse by panic-buying. 

According to GasBuddy, users of Android and iOS devices typically downloaded its application about 15,000 times per day in 2021. But, on Tuesday that the app reached 313,001 downloads compared with the average daily downloads of 15,339 in the last thirty days. This means the app reached 20 times more downloads on Tuesday than the average day in 2021. 

“I was taken aback by the extent of the gas shortages. By Thursday afternoon, GasBuddy said, there were outages at 73 percent of stations in Washington, D.C, 69 percepnt in North Carolina, 52 percent in South Carolina, and at high levels in several other states,” Max Metral, GasBuddy’s chief technical officer, said in an interview.

“We knew we’d have some traffic increase, but I had no idea, there’s a societal part of that, too, because the event itself wasn’t the problem. The problem was that everyone just went out and tried to horde gasoline, and it got much worse,” Metral added.

WawaGasBuddy was established in 2000 as a website to track fuel prices. It had been owned by United Communications Group, a Maryland-based private holding company, but was sold to Professional Data solutions, Inc. in late April. It uses data contributed by users at more than 150,000 gas stations to offer analysis about the fuel market.