Feeds

iTunes hack used to fiddle App Store ratings

103 stars for me! I'm awesome!

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Compromised Apple App Store accounts have been abused by rogue developers to boost their ranking and increase their sales.

Hijacked accounts were reportedly used to buy multiple copies of previously obscure Vietnamese-language eBooks, in an apparent bid to game the iTunes ranking system.

The eBooks concerned have been pulled from Apple's store and the account of seller Thuat Nguyen of mycompany has been suspended, Mac Rumours reports.

During the apparent attack 42 of the top 50 books listed in iTunes came from Nguyen, Endgadget reports.

The manipulation had a negative effect on the rankings of legitimate application and content developers, who were first to raise the alarm over the apparent malfeasance on Saturday after noticing that their apps had fallen straight off the charts.

Early reports are split over the extent of the apparent scam. Mac Rumours reckons that a small number of accounts were breached, probably as the result of a phishing attack. However, TNW Apple reports that the scam involved apps from several developers in different countries. It reckons the Apple App store is full of account pilfering and laundering App Farms.

Whatever the extent of the problem it wouldn't hurt to follow TNW's security advice for App Store users here. The FAQ provides far more detailed security tips than Apple's reported advice that anyone who suspects problems with their account ought to change their password. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.