It’s time for the App Store to address dating app fakes

Apple should take action to protect its users now

App Store

Fake apps are rife in the Apple Store and the fast-growing dating app sector is just one of those areas being affected. It’s having a huge impact on not just developers of legitimate apps for seeking love but the daters themselves too. It’s time for the Apple Store to step up to the mark and start taking action against apps that are fake.

When an Apple user searches the app store looking for a download that will connect them with their perfect match or a quick hook-up, they’re flooded with a huge selection of apps to choose. Wading through the imitations and cons is no small task for users.

Despite Apple already have policies in place to prevent fake apps, it’s not currently working well enough to eliminate all the suspicious apps from the dating market.

It’s failure to address the concerns that are being raised by valid app developers means that users are being cheated too. Singletons download and use dating apps to find real friends, hook-ups, and loves to connect with but it can be impossible to find one that lives up to its promises. Even after reading the app description and checking out the reviews, users can be left feeling disappointed.

So, how do these fake dating apps draw in customers and appear authentic?

Firstly, they use bots to make their site appear popular. Fake accounts are not a new problem in the online dating world but it might surprise users to find out that the fun conversation they’ve been having is actually been a bot all along. Fake and auto messages mean daters simply waste their time with no real date or meeting on the horizon. It’s a scam that’s designed to keep people swiping.

Have you ever read plenty of 5-star reviews on a dating app only to be left wondering how they were given? The answer might be through a scam method. Nobody wants to pay to contact their new matches and some apps only offer this once a user has left a 5-star review. It pushes fake dating apps up the App Store ranking system. It’s a cheating strategy that’s against the terms and conditions of the Apple Store but that hasn’t stopped numerous apps from deploying this tactic.

Some fake apps go one step further and advertise themselves on the App Store! This can appear to give credibility to the fake apps, leading to more users and additional scam victims.

Finally, scam app developers use a devious way to get their app approved for the App Store in the first place. Some dating app developers will close certain functions when they submit their app for approval, such as an auto message feature. Once it’s been approved, they’ll simply switch these functions back on, resulting in an app that doesn’t meet the standard Apple rules.

What can the Apple Store do to put an end to fake apps?

It costs little to create a fake app and if it gets removed from the Apple Store, developers are simply allowed to create a new one and begin enticing users on to their fake dating app again. With little deterrent currently to put off scam developers, it’s time for Apple to take real action against dating apps that don’t stick to the rules. We’ve got three suggestions from the hookup dating app, Wild’s engineers that the brand should be implementing to improve competition and user experience.

· Scan codes – When fake apps are banned, some developers slightly change the code to allow them to upload again and start drawing in users. It’s possible for Apple to scan app codes that are submitted during the application process and flag up those that are too similar to apps that have already been banned.

· Check apps manually – Along with scanning codes, a dedicated team to check apps manually can flag up potential issues that may have previously been missed. It might be resource intensive but it can improve the whole experience of the App Store and using downloads. Used in conjunction with code scanning and a reporting system, Apple could target those apps that are of the highest concern.

· Remove scam developers – Apple should follow the lead of Google Play on this front. Developers that have created fake and untrustworthy apps should see their accounts removed completely, removing the second chance to cheat Apple and its users. It’s a procedure that competitor Google Play already has in place.

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