APPLE iPhone users are being warned to be on the lookout for a number of apps which could end up costing them hundreds of pounds a year. Here’s all you need to know and which apps to consider deleting.
It’s usually Android owners who are bombarded with warnings but the latest app alert is targeting Apple iPhone owners. According to a new report by the team at Sophos Lab, there has been an explosion of apps appearing on the Apple Store Store which could leave users seriously out of pocket.
More than 30 popular applications – which Sophos considers to be fleeceware – have been available to download on iPhones via the official store. Once installed, these services are often free to begin with but soon switch to a paid subscription with some ending up costing over $400 (£320) over a year.
It’s worth noting that paid subscriptions are perfectly normal on the App Store but Sophos says these latest apps offer almost no extra features from apps that are free to use.
Here’s a full list of apps from the Sophos report
Seer App:Face, Horoscope, Palm
Selfie Art – Photo Editor
Lucky Life – Future Seer
Life Palmistry – AI Palm & Tag
Picsjoy-Cartoon Effect Editor
Aging seer – Faceapp,Horoscope
Face Aging Scan-AI Age Camera
Face Reader – Horoscope Secret
CIAO – Live Video Chat
Astro Time & Daily Horoscope
Video Recorder / Reaction
Crazy Helium Funny Face Editor
Banuba: Face Filters & Effects
QR Code Reader – Scanner
QR Code Reader & Barcode PRO
Max Volume Booster
Face Reading – Horoscope 2020
Forecast Master 2019
mSpy Lite Phone Family Tracker
Fortunescope: Palm Reader 2019
Zodiac Master Plus – Palm Scan
WonderKey-Cartoon Avatar Maker
Avatar Creator – Cartoon Emoji
iMoji – Cartoon Avatar Emojis
Life Insight-Palm & Animal Face
Curiosity Lab-Fun Encyclopedia
Quick Art: 1-Tap Photo Editor
Astroline astrology, horoscope
Celeb Twin – Who you look like
If you have one of these apps and want to change or cancel your subscription, then there is a way to stop the subscription plan.
Simply head to the App Store on your device and tap on your profile pic in the top right-hand corner.
Then tap Subscriptions
Tap the subscription that you want to manage including being able to cancel it.
Explaining more, Jagadeesh Chandraiah from Sophos, said: “If you think one of these apps is free and install it, the app presents you with a “free trial” notification immediately upon launching the app for the first time.
“This notification prompts the user to provide payment card details. In some cases, most of the useful features of the app will only be usable if you sign up for the subscription. Some users may sign up to subscribe without reading the fine print, which includes the actual cost of the subscriptions.
“Many of these apps lack any extraordinary features that aren’t already present in many other apps, including truly free apps.”
Some of these apps are clearly bringing in huge revenue for the developers with Zodiac Master Plus, one of the apps in the Sophos list of fleeceware, being listed as the 11th highest revenue-generating app.
Another app, named Lucky Life – Future Seer, is earning more revenue than even the extremely popular ones.
Although you may think most people won’t be fooled into subscribing to these apps there are plenty of reviews on the App Store which show how easy it can be to rack up a big bill.
One user, posting a review, said: “We’ve just had the displeasure of finding out our daughter (who is 12 years old) has had this app on her phone ‘unknowingly’ for 5 months at a cost of £148!!!!”