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Old Dec 21, 2012, 12:32 AM   #1
syd430
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How does obvious fraud make it through Apple's approval process?

What's even more interesting than getting approval in the first place, is that Apple seems to have no intention in pulling the App even after several months. The app is currently ranked 6th in the Australian store (under games -> strategy).

This is also not the first time I've seen something like this. I can't wrap my head around how this keeps happening and is able to pass all the checks, and then remain in the App Store for months on end. Beyond the fraud itself, there is also obvious copyright issues at play here too.

How is it possible that this has not been pulled?
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 12:45 AM   #2
syd430
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For some reason, I can't attach more than one image to the original post. Here is the app description, which is in contrast to the dozens of reviews that claim the app is merely a particle simulator or something of that nature.

Also the 4 star rating is a result of a flood of fake initial reviews, then followed by the dozens of actual 1 star reviews.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 12:56 AM   #3
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Wow, that's pretty bad. I guess $0.99 for Minecraft should have been a red flag to begin with, though. How long has it been up in the App Store?
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 01:00 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by SnowLeopard OSX View Post
Wow, that's pretty bad. I guess $0.99 for Minecraft should have been a red flag to begin with, though. How long has it been up in the App Store?
Just checked the version history and it's been up since September. Also here is the full app description. Can't see anything about a particle simulator in there. Surely this App has been reported hundreds of times. Just can't wrap my head around this.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 09:41 AM   #5
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Because people don't take time off their busy schedule to actually report it to Apple ... They take time to vent out in comments and open forums but never to actually write a feedback to Apple ...
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 09:56 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by SanjeevRana View Post
Because people don't take time off their busy schedule to actually report it to Apple ... They take time to vent out in comments and open forums but never to actually write a feedback to Apple ...
I'm not venting, just something I came across.

Also it's been out since September. It would have been reported many times, at the very least by the actual developer of the game. Regardless, Apple approved it in the first place, including the subsequent updates.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 05:06 AM   #7
syd430
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Ok so this is how it's done:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost...44&postcount=3
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 05:22 AM   #8
syd430
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here is the iTunes link:


https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/mine...559649056?mt=8

Does it show on the US App Store ?
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 05:28 AM   #9
rygamble
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Honestly you should've known it was a fake just by who the developer is.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 05:38 AM   #10
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Honestly you should've known it was a fake just by who the developer is.
I didn't buy the app. I wasn't looking for this game. It's just something I came across and it's got me wondering how something so obvious is able to remain in the App Store. I mean there is no game, it's a blatant fraud, yet apple seems content with the developer from making money from it.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 10:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syd430 View Post
here is the iTunes link:


https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/mine...559649056?mt=8

Does it show on the US App Store ?
It shows in the Canadian store. I didn't check the USA store.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 12:23 PM   #12
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Hah...$2.99 in the US store....I love the positive reviews.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 01:15 PM   #13
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You have to realise that Apple's approval process has limitations.

It's not designed to be an arbiter of what is good and what is bad, nor is it designed to enforce all of the App Store's guidelines.

There are some things runs automatic checks for (e.g. adding a hidden tethering option), but they really don't spend a lot of time verifying copyright or trademark ownership.

I think people place too much trust in Apple to protect them from things that are just bad.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 01:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daveoc64 View Post
I think people place too much trust in Apple to protect them from things that are just bad.
It's not simply "protecting us from what's bad," but protecting us from blatant fraud. There's a big difference. Going by the reviews, it's not just a bad game, but one that doesn't even remotely come close to the description or images.

Most stores, upon hearing bad customer feedback, would check and possibly remove the item from their shelves and, at the very least, offer an unhappy customer a refund. Apple does neither.

Without a return policy, it's Apple's job to make sure we get what we pay for.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 01:32 PM   #15
syd430
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Originally Posted by Daveoc64 View Post
You have to realise that Apple's approval process has limitations.

It's not designed to be an arbiter of what is good and what is bad, nor is it designed to enforce all of the App Store's guidelines.

There are some things runs automatic checks for (e.g. adding a hidden tethering option), but they really don't spend a lot of time verifying copyright or trademark ownership.

I think people place too much trust in Apple to protect them from things that are just bad.
There is no game. There is nothing. Its like selling an iPad "as is", then only sending the box. Its an outright scam. Not a question of quality.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 01:37 PM   #16
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It's because Apple makes good money off (scam) apps like this. Like you said, it's been up there since September and is 6th in the AUS store. That's a lot of downloads, and a lot of money for Apple. I doubt they care that people are getting defrauded. I'm sure at some point in the future they'll shut down the app, and say "look at how we have prevented the future fraud of millions of customers!" and herald it as a triumph of the system while not refunding any of the ones that have been defrauded in the past.

Apple isn't any different than Monsanto or Coca-Cola -they'll make money any way they can. It's a sad realization of the corporation controlled world we live in.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 01:51 PM   #17
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It's because Apple makes good money off (scam) apps like this.
I'd say the embarrassment is not worth the little money they will make from the app. Most likely someone over there is just extremely lazy or its literally somehow missed their attention.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 02:40 PM   #18
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You think a fake Minecraft app is bad, how about, not 1, but 2 fake Halo 4 apps. One was a chess game, the other a racing game. Nothing to do with Halo, yet them made it thru the approval process.


http://www.tuaw.com/2012/12/21/yes-t...bviously-fake/
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 04:12 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by cyks View Post
Most stores, upon hearing bad customer feedback, would check and possibly remove the item from their shelves and, at the very least, offer an unhappy customer a refund. Apple does neither.

Without a return policy, it's Apple's job to make sure we get what we pay for.
That's clearly not what happens though, is it?

There are plenty of "broken" or misleading Apps on the App Store.

They let people use the intellectual property of others to trick people into downloading a video or a link to a webpage.

It's like an ebay scam where you're buying a photo of something (the "iPod Photo" was a particular favourite).
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Old Jan 9, 2013, 06:52 PM   #20
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FWIW:

Looks like Apple's put an end to the scam those developers were using.

Apple Now Locking Screenshots for Submitted Apps, Shutting Down Popular Scam Tactic

Also FWIW, the article states "Apple has refunded the purchase price of scam apps in the past", so it appears that Apple is losing money over this, if you consider the processing fee they have to pay their processor for the initial charge (and subsequent refund) to the customers cards.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 01:29 AM   #21
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FWIW:

Looks like Apple's put an end to the scam those developers were using.
This is actually a different problem.

An App like the one featured in this thread rips off the entire intellectual property of an existing product.

Apple is going to stop developers swapping screenshots without updating their App, but that doesn't change the fact that they allow Apps that are just fraudulent onto the App store in the first place.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 03:46 AM   #22
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I'm glad Apple is locking screenshots after the app has been approved. We shouldn't be seeing anymore of these.

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