Apple just removed over 250 apps from its Store, the company said on Monday. Most of these apps were of Chinese origin and were downloaded by around 1 million users.
The apps were able to access and store personal information, like Apple ID and device serial numbers, says a report by SourceDNA.
The security blog found 256 tainted programs which uses a software development kit provided by Chinese advertiser Youmi. Youmi then allegedly mined sensitive information from users, without the knowledge of the actual developers, reveals SourceDNA.
“We’ve identified a group of apps that are using a third-party advertising SDK, developed by Youmi, a mobile advertising provider, that uses private APIs to gather private information, such as user email addresses and device identifiers, and route data to its company server,” said Apple.
“This is a violation of our security and privacy guidelines. The apps using Youmi’s SDK will be removed from the App Store and any new apps submitted to the App Store using this SDK will be rejected. We are working closely with developers to help them get updated versions of their apps that are safe for customers and in compliance with our guidelines back in the App Store quickly,” Apple added. [Source]
The names of the tainted apps found to be gathering user information weren’t disclosed by Apple or SourceDNA either.