Tuesday, 18 December, 2018

More Mac Apps Caught Stealing Your Browser History

Mac App Store apps found stealing user data No.1 Adware Removal App On Apple App Store Caught Spying On Mac Users
Kayla Schwartz | 13 September, 2018, 13:15

Before it was removed by Apple during the week, it rankedg as the fourth most popular paid app in the Mac App Store, meaning it potentially has an installed user base will into the millions.

Notwithstanding the spyware nature of Adware Doctor, Wardle admitted that it actually removes adware from users' browsers.

According to the security researcher, Patrick Wardle, the app secretly collects data, encrypts it in a file and sends that data to servers placed in China.

Instead, it appears the apps, which are installed with access to the home directory on macOS, would gather data from the Mac as a zip file and upload it to the developer's servers.

We reached out to Trend Micro for a statement on the matter but received no reply at the time of publishing.

Other programs by Trend Micro, including Dr Cleaner, Open Any Files, and Dr Antivirus also exfiltrate user data without their consent, and have been removed from Apple's App Store. They looked like legitimate applications, with several of them making best-selling apps lists, then they'd work their way around the sandboxing Apple uses to prevent apps from accessing data they shouldn't.

Security researchers have uncovered a number of applications in Apple's Mac App Store that are apparently sending sensitive user data back to their own servers. However, it looks that Apple does a miserable job sometimes when checking all submitted applications.

Apple has already removed certain Apps such as Adware Doctor from their App store, and is expected to pull others from the App store immediately.

As of this day, "Dr. Unarchiver" is the nÂș 12 most standard free app in the US Mac App Retailer. Any user running both the app and a major browser (Chrome, Firefox and Safari in this case) has likely had their online activity recorded and stolen away to the Chinese server.

Hurricane Florence Is a 'No-Kidding Nightmare' in These New Astronaut Photos
EDT (1600 GMT), the National Hurricane Center (NHC) announced that Hurricane Florence had strengthened to a Category 4 storm. Arnold also captured hurricanes Isaac and Helene lining up behind Florence in the Atlantic.

Yet still, at the time of writing, the rogue app - Adware Doctor - stands as the No.1 grossing paid app in the app store's utilities categories.

Trend is removing this, er, feature from its software, though.

Since the apps are no longer in the Mac App Store, SiliconANGLE can't confirm that they're from Trend Micro.

However, it added that it had chose to remove this function from the apps.

Logs of user browser history, previously held for three months, have now been deleted.

Update [September 10, 19:13]: Trend Micro released less than an hour ago a statement denying that its apps were stealing user data. However, since then other similarly problematic apps have been discovered.

Apple hadn't responded to a request for comment.

And Reed said it's best to not trust certain apps in the Mac App Store.

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