Fleeceware – What is it and how to safeguard yourself

There ae lot of different threats to your mobile. While all know about the malwares and adwares, Fleeceware is little different from them and it is not easy to find through any normal scans. Fleeceware is an app which charges the user excessive monthly subscription fee after a brief trial period has ended. Normally , user ends up paying even if they uninstalled the app. Unfortunately both Google and Apple play store contains these kind of apps. These apps behave normally. It won’t post any excessive ads or steel your personal data. Their only aim is money and they do end up collecting it legally. It will be tough to get back the money once they charge you.

Avast recently found that there are around 204 such apps available combined in both Google and Apple stores and they have accounted for over billion downloads and earned over $400 million in revenue. Their way of cheating is offer a free trial period and then charge the users a subscription amount which is very high for the service they offer. Sometimes, you will be charged right at the beginning itself. They will say it is free trial but will ask you for the card service and will charge. Avast have given the list to both Apple and Google to remove them from listing.

Some of the categories which are mainly posing as good apps but overcharge are musical instrument apps, palm readers, image editors, camera filters, fortune tellers, QR code and PDF readers, and ‘slime simulators’. It is very tough thing to find actually because they do provide the service but problem is they overcharge the users.

You can check your subscription in Android by going to play store and Account and then on “Purchase history”. Go to the Play Store and click on the hamburger icon on the upper left corner and then click on “Subscriptions”. If you find anything suspicious and find apps that you did not subscribe, please cancel them immediately.

In the Iphone

Go to the App Store, click on Apple ID in the upper right corner.

– From here click on “Purchased”

To check on past purchases with payments

– From the App Store, go to Apple ID and then click on Purchase History and scroll down.

To check on active subscriptions

– From the App Store, go to Apple ID and then click on “Subscriptions”.

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