Beware! These Mac apps might be stealing your data

Three Trend Micro apps steal data from users

Popular applications from the Mac App Store were routinely downloading users' web history, but Apple only took them down when security researchers went public. Cleaner, a cleanup app that offers Memory Optimization, Disk Cleaning and System Monitoring, and Dr. Antivirus, an antivirus app that protects Mac users from adware and hijack browsers, ' the company told the tech site. Over the weekend, the saga continued with revelations that several other apps in the Mac App Store were doing the same thing. "For example, a sandboxed application from the Mac App Store should not be able to access a user's sensitive browser history", he continued.

More worrying than the specific abuse here is how Adware Doctor managed to sneak its malevolent intentions through Apple's supposedly-watertight security.

The takedown comes just days after Privacy First and Wardle found that another App Store security product, AdWare Doctor, was pulled for exhibiting almost the exact same malicious activity.

'Trend Micro is aware of a recent scrutiny of some of our consumer applications, including our Dr. Now with new evidence that Adware Doctor application is actually breaking the rules and stealing user data, hence, now the well-known security application Adware Doctor was eventually removed from the store and is not available. However, it is being said that the app had violated the company's "Data Collection and Storage" guidelines. 9to5Mac confirmed this with its testing of the Dr. Unarchiver app.

Before it was pulled, Adware Doctor was the number one paid utility in Apple's Mac App Store. The results confirm that Dr Cleaner, Dr Cleaner Pro, Dr. Antivirus, Dr. Unarchiver, Dr. Battery, and.

Trend Micro linked to a support page for Dr.

It is being further reported that the cyber-security researcher @Privacy1st had also shot a proof-of-concept video in which he had listed out the details of suspicious behavior in the app.

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Later it decided that an apology was in order and said: "We apologise to our community for concern they might have felt and can reassure all that their data is safe and at no point was compromised".

The company says it has updated the apps and they have deleted the logs from those apps including users browsing history.

However, it added that it had made a decision to remove this function from the apps. "This has been corrected".

Wardle wrote how the apps have been collecting users' browsing history and transmitting the information to a server based in China - an accusation Trend Micro has slammed as false.

It was removed by Apple, but the developer renamed it as Adware Doctor which has been sold via the App Store until this week. A spokesperson did not return requests for comment. The question is whether or not significant media attention will be required to reveal other bad actors in the Mac App Store too, or if this series of events will change the vetting process. If more apps are found to be covertly gathering user data, however, this reputation could be at risk.

Trend Micro's list of apps in the App Store at the time of publishing is reduced to two entries: Network Scanner (five ratings) and Dr. WiFi (not rated yet). Some how the "security feature" also ended up in non-security applications.

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