iTunes Hacked, Accounts Charged for Unauthorized Apps
Apple's iTunes Store has reportedly been hacked, with a developer named Thuat Nguyen using the opportunity to propel his own applications into 40 of the top 50 spots on the iTunes iBook section. The hack included unauthorized charges to hundreds, perhaps thousands of iTunes accounts.
The story broke over tech blog TheNextWeb during the long weekend. Nguyen reportedly took advantage of a posted hack to the iTunes system and charged unsuspecting users for his own applications. The majority of these charges came for a set of books called Conan, Thuy Hu, and Vien Ngoc Rong, which all sell for $4.99 each. (Source: pcworld.com)
Suspect Apps Removed from Store
Other apps were part of the scheme, including the Charismaist app and the Wishii Network apps. Developer Storm 8's applications were reportedly involved as well.
All of the suspect applications have been removed from Apple's app store and iTunes.
Reports of Sky-High Charges
Users whose accounts were hacked report sky-high unauthorized charges. Most of these range from about $150 to $600, with at least one user reporting an astounding $1,400 charge for an unknown game.
According to reports, Apple hasn't been particularly responsive in helping affected users out. "Unlike what others have reported, we were taken for over $1400.00 on what looks like in-game credits for some game called World War at $160 a transaction and some music ... Apple did nothing to help but give the password reset advice and removing of the credit card info." (Source: dailytech.com)
Website MacRumors.com, later stated that reports of the App Store break-in were "greatly exaggerated." Issues with compromised iTunes accounts have "been ongoing for years," and that they are "not convinced that there has been a major spike in activity [with regard to the reported attacks]." (Source: macrumors.com)
Apple urges users who think they might be affected to change their iTunes passwords and to contact their credit card companies. (Source: pcworld.com)