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Monday, August 2, 2021
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Apple removes ‘Fakespot’ app from App Store on data privacy concerns by Amazon

The app which was launched last month for iOS users, is a service for filtering and hiding fake product reviews on Amazon

Global tech giant Apple has announced to remove the ‘Fakespot’ app from its App Store following a request from American multinational technology company, Amazon. The company focuses on the e-commerce business.

The app which was launched last month for users is a service for filtering and hiding fake product reviews on Amazon. The retailer said that was concerned about how a new update to the Fakespot app was ‘wrapping’ its website without permission and how that could be theoretically exploited to steal Amazon customer data, The Verge reported.

Fakespot founder Saoud Khalifah told the tech website that Apple abruptly removed the app without any explanation. Apple has confirmed that it has removed the app, while disputing the circumstances. The app, just like its web browser extension, integrates with Amazon’s website using unofficial methods to identify fake reviews within product pages, 9To5Google reported.

Amazon, on the other hand, claimed that the app injected code that could compromise user data, as well as providing consumers with “misleading information” about the sellers. Amazon confirmed that it had asked Apple to remove the app under guideline 5.2.2, which prohibits developers from using third-party in an app without permission.

Fakespot developers pointed out that Amazon bought search results for the Fakespot keyword in the App Store to prevent users from finding the app. Searching for Fakespot in the App Store now shows the official Amazon app first in the list with an ‘Ad’ badge.

The app registered 150,000 installations on iOS devices during the period it was available on the App Store.

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