Apple Inc. finally lets App Store users report a ‘Scam or a Fraud’ without multiple jumps through hoops and menus or falling victim

Apple Inc App Store Report fraud Scam Button
App Store may have fraud and scams, accepts Apple Inc.? Pic credit: Daniel Go/Flickr

The iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 for Apple iPhone and iPad respectively, have reintroduced a much-needed way to alert Apple Inc. about possible frauds and scams lurking in the App Store.

Apple Inc. has brought back the ‘Report a Problem’ button. It has placed it right inside app listings on the App Store. The button will allow iPhone and iPad users to report suspicious apps that could be scams and frauds.

Apple Inc. is no more in denial about dangers such as fraudulent apps that try to scam and steal iPhone and iPad users:

Apple Inc. apparently believed its iOS and iPadOS App Store was completely devoid of apps that attempted to lure victims and scam them. Hence, the iPhone maker simply removed the ‘Report a Problem’ link.

The company was so confident that only those app users who had already fallen victim and handed over their money, could report. In other words, iPhone and iPad users could not report an app if they had shrewdly spotted a possible scam. They could not alert Apple Inc. about the possible pitfalls of downloading and using the suspicious app.

Before the arrival of iOS 15, App Store users had a very limited or crippled set of options to alert Apple Inc. Users had to scroll all the way down to the bottom of the Apps or Games tab in the App Store.

Upon hitting the button, the App Store would send them to an external website. Users had to renter their login credentials. Thereafter, vigilant users could only select from “Report suspicious activity,” “Report a quality issue”, “Request a refund” or “Find my content.”

As it is painfully obvious, none of the options offers a clear way to report a fraud or a scam. Strangely, “Report suspicious activity” would redirect users to Apple Support instead. It was as if Apple Inc. refused to believe scam and fraudulent apps exist.

As mentioned above, Apple Inc. would only let victims report “a quality issue”. In other words, users had to lose their money to a scamster, in order to approach the App Store manager.

The report a Problem button in App Store now explicitly allows iPhone and iPad users to report a scam or a fraud, but will Apple Inc. take action?

Moving ahead, Apple Inc. will allow iPhone and iPad users who spot a suspicious app to report the same, without paying for the same. Moreover, Apple Inc. has specifically inserted the option: ‘Scam or fraud’.

Incidentally, the feature is available to select users in the United States of America. Some UK users have claimed they do not have access to the same. Moreover, some users have claimed some apps do not have the option at all. Apple Inc. has shown such selective attitude towards apps.

Although Apple Inc. has deployed the button, it is not clear how quickly the company will react to an alert. Reports indicate Apple only has 500 human app reviewers. In comparison, Facebook has 15,000 moderators, Google has 20,000, and even Twitter has 2,200. The company may be hiring personnel to tackle the growing issue of fraudulent apps though.

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