There seems to be a mobile app for just about anything you could possibly want to do and scammers are quite aware of this which is why the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently issued a warning to shoppers in particular about phony apps being circulated by cybercriminals who harvest credit card information, banking information and other personal information from phony shopping apps that they lure people into downloading that appear to be legitimate. A couple of months ago, I warned you about a few specific phony apps that were made to look like the real apps for Christian Dior, Foot Locker, Nordstrom, Jimmy Choo and Dollar Tree.
It is important to limit your downloading of apps to legitimate sources such as the Apple App Store and Google Play to avoid malware infected apps. Before downloading any app, read the reviews carefully. While scammers will write glowing phony reviews about their apps, their reviews are usually cursory and do not provide much information. You can also go directly to a legitimate retailers website for information about any apps they may have for their products. Also, you can do a search on Google or other search engines using the words “fake app” along with the name of the company whose app you are interested in to see if there have been reports of problems. Finally, make sure that you have installed security software on your phone and that it is updated with the latest security patches.