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Fake apps, their characteristics and how to deal with them

Fake apps ; how to deal with them

Major brands promoted themselves via newspapers and magazines initially, followed by that of radio and succeeding the radio was the television. Emerging victorious over all the mentioned modes of advertisements was Desktop Internet which succeeded the television.

Now this situation has been altered such that users make use of mobile digital media more than the traditional desktop internet access. Many enterprises are investing in the rapidly enlarging mobile app industry.

However, the fake apps have to be taken into account as they have the potential to affect unwary customers in a malevolent way. So the question arises regarding the authenticity of mobile apps and whether user’s digital data is at risk of being compromised and affected in the digital world.

Based on a research by Flurry, mobile commerce constituted of 40% of online commerce globally in 2015. As the proliferation of apps increases in the various app stores of the mobile world, the fake apps make their presence felt with the plethora of apps in the mobile platform impacting enterprises.

Enterprises must bring mobile apps into their consideration as mobile apps promote sales of the business in the digital world and if an app is not created for a business, the customers are vulnerable to hackers and conmen who swindle the unwary customers and make them purchase their own products affecting the genuine brand’s reputation.

There are many instances of fake apps presence which have been noted. A specific example could be the Breadwallet app which made it to the Apple App Store after imitating the original app.

This incident which shows that Apple’s App Store which is one of the top secure digital stores present was also impacted by such fake apps. If Apple’s App Store was able to be infiltrated, the question arises as what chances do the other app stores have. The conmen are becoming more innovative regarding their approach whereas brands like Apple contribute a negligible amount of time regarding these malicious schemers.

The aspect that Apple was prone to such a major error in spite of boasting some of the best security features in the world, proves that for users and brands that the dominant app stores while providing considerable security cannot 100 % invest their time on verifying every single aspect as they also have to concentrate on their enterprises. Brands must be wary of the details as to who are designing their apps and who are trying to imitate such apps in the digital market world.

Hackers invade any company- be it small or large scale. Certain aspects must be focused on by the brands when they are dealing with fortifying their enterprise’s mobile app.

Firms which consistently communicate and touch base with the users are very vulnerable to such conmen. It is also prevalent in enthralling vogues such as the 2016 US Election and many others.

Forbes announced an article regarding how hackers infiltrated the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro by implementing counterfeit Wi-Fi hotspots across the city. These fraudulent hotspots allowed the invaders to retrieve data from the smartphones of the unwary users and also download malware and ‘malapps’  onto the user’s mobile devices

Simultaneously during the Olympics, the gaming app Pokemon Go had enthralled many people. In August 2016 it was noted that counterfeit apps of Pokemon Go were able to be installed from a third-party website. These fraudulent apps imitated the original app and made unwary people to download them.

Organizations can be impacted in several ways by the fake apps. Malevolent use of the brand’s data, fraudulent activities, issues related to trademarking, and unwarranted sales are some of the effects created by such fake apps on brands and organizations.

In spite of some good security imbibed in some of the mobile app stores, third parties are able to pass through these measures and install fake or malapps.

As the brands have to concentrate on their enterprise related work, they dont have the ample time to oversee their own apps and tackle their imitators. It is recommended to use the services of a well-seasoned company.

Few of such app monitoring agencies have advanced and sophisticated tools and techniques to aid the brands in identifying the unwarranted use of their property and certain discrepancies.They take the following aspects into consideration encompassing the name of the app, its publishers, its prices and such.

Apps should be reinforced with good surveillance.This constitutes in identifying the areas where hackers are likely to invade and install fake apps.

The Google Play Store, the Apple App store and Windows phone in accordance with the Digital Millenium Copyright Act, are not accountable for any violation in their platforms, but they are bound to respond if any transgression has captured their attention. The response given by such aforementioned companies are negligible in terms of patching up. And ultimately the bane and stress falls on the brands. Such brands are coming forward to pay and access the efficient and quick services of an external company.

Tips to fortify mobile apps

Featured are 5 simple ways with regards to a firm securing itself from conmen.

Gauging and comprehending the mobile app portfolio

The sequence has to be initiated by researching in detail regarding the apps which a brand has and who is in charge of monitoring the portfolio of such apps. This, however, is a big challenge for the executives as the various sectors of the brand design various apps the details of which are not communicated and managed properly. The amalgamation of the branding, law and IT teams can provide better safeguarding which initiates with a list of apps present in the brand.

Regulating the mobile presence:

Once the app portfolio gauging process is over, the next step the brand has to do is to regulate its mobile presence. The uniformity regarding the techniques, mobile markets and other such aspects related to the apps will fortify a good standard which is easily comprehensible to the users. Provided the brand has collaborated with several other partners to design apps, they have to be in terms of the protocols which are followed by the internal teams.

Inculcating the users with necessary details

The brand and its users are ascertained to be secure if the executives of the brand or the concerned personnel distribute and imbibe the various mobile app protocols among the users to make them wary regarding the fraudulent schemers and avoid them. Having experienced this a lot, the financial agencies have put up related useful information on public websites.

Supervising third-parties

In spite of the security aspects implemented in some mobile app marketplaces, the hackers can easily pass through the protective scale and fill the market with fake apps. Their attention is also focused on lower-level marketplaces which consist of negligible safety guidelines. A robust procedure must be implemented to supervise any unlawful transgression.

 Carrying out brand rights

Many of the app marketplaces feature dispute solving guidelines which have to be incorporated and assimilated by the brands. Alternatively, collaboration with an external service provider can also come in handy. These methods are the simplest ones available to eliminate law breaching apps altogether.


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