A crypto investor claims to have been robbed of almost $790,000 in Bitcoin after downloading a scam app on his iPhone.
Phillipe Christodoulou lost his life savings last month while attempting to check his Bitcoin balance using what later turned out to be fraudulent software obtained from the Apple App store.
After downloading the app and entering his crypto wallet credentials, Mr Christodoulou’s digital cash disappeared within seconds.
He lost 16.1 bitcoin – worth almost $790,000 at the time, or about $1.3 million today.
Even though the cyber crooks ransacked his life savings, Mr Christodoulou says he’s more annoyed at Apple than the perpetrators.
That’s because the California iPhone-maker is supposed to keep scam applications off of the App Store.
“They betrayed the trust that I had in them,” he said.
“Apple doesn’t deserve to get away with this.”
Mr Christodoulou’s attackers fooled him by dressing up a phony app to look as though it was built by “Trezor,” the company that makes the wallet where he stored his bitcoin.
Mr Christodoulou downloaded it after searching “Treznor” on the App Store. The scam listing sported the company’s padlock logo and green background.
It was rated close to five stars, according to Mr Christodoulou.
Apple bills its App Store as a safe place for users and the company reviews all app submissions to check for scams.
In the fake Trezor app’s case, the software was presented as a “cryptography” app for encrypting iPhone files and storing passwords.
While it had Trezor’s name and logo, developers assured Apple it was “not involved in any cryptocurrency”. The app appeared on the App Store on January 22.
Once on the store, developers changed the app to a cryptocurrency wallet.
According to UK outfit Coinfirm, which conducts investigations into cryptocurrency fraud, five people lost a total of $2.1 million to the iOS app.
Fake Trezor apps on Android – which has its own issues with scam apps – have reportedly conned people out of almost $790,000.
Apple said that it removed the app on February 3 after Trezor reported it.
A similar app appeared two days later and was also removed.
In a statement, an Apple spokesperson said: “User trust is at the foundation of why we created the App Store, and we have only deepened that commitment in the years since.
“Study after study has shown that the App Store is the most secure app marketplace in the world, and we are constantly at work to maintain that standard and to further strengthen the App Store’s protections.
“In the limited instances when criminals defraud our users, we take swift action against these actors as well as to prevent similar violations in the future.”
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission