The Washington Post estimated in 2021 that approximately 2% of the 1,000 highest-grossing apps in the Apple App Store were scams. It proves that dodgy developers can also be found in the Mac App Store. According to a source, a developer named Kosta Eleftheriou has exposed certain dubious Mac App Store applications that use pop-ups that make it difficult to exit until you pay their monthly fees. Eleftheriou had previously discovered a number of fraudulent iOS apps that had passed Apple’s review process.
After a Twitter user named Edoardo Vacchi complained about an app called My Metronome that limits the quit button until you pay for a subscription, the developer began looking into the problem. (On iOS 15, Apple made it easy to report fraudulent apps, but Vacchi said there was no method to report My Metronome on the Mac.) Jeff Johnson, a Mac and iOS developer, did some investigation and discovered that the company behind My Metronome, Music Paradise LLC, is registered in Russia.
Fraudulent Apps Force Users to Pay for Subscriptions on App Store
While some of the Music Paradise and Groove Vibes apps provided proper ways to quit, others removed the quit option and Mac’s force-quit keys, according to The Verge. It is still possible to exit the apps without paying, but the links to shut their pop-ups appear to have been purposefully hidden.
Apple is proud of its stringent App Store screening process; in fact, Tim Cook warned that the store would be a “toxic disaster” if it didn’t have it. Despite the tech giant’s efforts, shady and fraudulent apps continue to make their way through, and it may even profit from them. The Post reported in 2021 that the scam apps it discovered duped customers of an estimated $48 million. When we checked, the My Metronome app was no longer available, although it’s unclear whether Apple took it down.