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Apple Responds to Reports of Mass iTunes Account Hacking

Hackers have targeted Apple’s App Store and iTunes before, but this most recent wave of iTunes fraud stands out for its brazenness. As recounted in a series of posts by The Next Web this past weekend, an obscure app developer named Thuat Nguyen suspiciously managed to nab 40 of the top 50 slots on the iTunes book store bestseller list, apparently by hacking iTunes users’ accounts and using them to purchase his books. iTunes users reported that between $100 and $1400 had been illicitly taken from their accounts and used to purchase unwanted apps.

Engadget got ahold of the following statement from Apple about the reports of iTunes hacking, which, while it doesn’t touch upon The Next Web’s allegations that iTunes fraud is far scarier and more common than we might like to believe, implicitly confirms the “fraudulent purchase patterns” reported in association with Thuat Nguyen’s apps:

The developer Thuat Nguyen and his apps were removed from the App Store for violating the developer Program License Agreement, including fraudulent purchase patterns.

Developers do not receive any iTunes confidential customer data when an app is downloaded.

If your credit card or iTunes password is stolen and used on iTunes we recommend that you contact your financial institution and inquire about canceling the card and issuing a chargeback for any unauthorized transactions. We also recommend that you change your iTunes account password immediately. For more information on best practices for password security visit http://www.apple.com/support/itunes.

If you have an iTunes account, check your account info ASAP and make sure that no one has taken your money, andcontact Apple customer support by email or call Apple at 1-800-275-2273 if you notice anything suspicious.

(via Engadget, The Next Web)

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