Hackers have once again turned to cracking iTunes accounts to obtain a ton of content paid content and leave you with the bill. Once inside your account, these thieves will steal your store credit and gift cards, and make purchases with your credit card and Paypal information. But is Apple doing enough to stop them?
iTunes users have taken to Apple’s Support Communities to report that their accounts have been used to fund fraudulent purchases that they did not authorize. Over 1,080 people have reported their experiences at the time of writing this post. Elcarmean writes:
The exact same thing just happened to me with the order occurring on December 1st, with the same Towson MD zip code put in. Luckily I did not have a credit card connected to the account, so it only used $20.50 in gift card credit. I have e-mailed Apple and am waiting for a response.
Apple is reportedly looking into the issue, and it is issuing refunds to customers who have been affected by hacking. However, many users report that the company is “reluctant” to deal with their issue, and tells them that their refund is a “one-time exception to our sales policy.”
One user, Fiona McKinlay, told The Global Mail that she added a $40 gift card to her iTunes account, but her balance dropped to $1.62 just days later because of in-app purchases she didn’t make. Apple disabled her account, refunded the money she had lost, then reactivated it.
McKinlay reports that while Apple was helpful, it “failed to acknowledge that there may be any sort of problem with their system.”
The Globe and Mail reports that Apple has “dithered” in addressing these issues:
Many of the iTunes users whose accounts have been hacked are increasingly frustrated with Apple’s customer service, saying the company at the very least has dithered in fixing the problem. Some accuse the tech giant of being indifferent to the problem.
While most of the instances of hacking are simply for personal gain, British tabloid The Daily Mail notes that some devious developers will hack into accounts to leave positive ratings and reviews on their own App Store titles.
The report points to an incident two years ago, when Thuat Nguyen of Vietnam hacked into over 400 accounts to boost his App Store sales and ratings.
Despite allegations that the company may be disinterested in the issue, an Apple spokesman confirmed that it “takes precautions to safeguard your personal information against loss, theft and misuse.”