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Business News/ Technology / News/  Apple Store's 'Pick Up' feature exploited in cybercrime scheme netting over $400,000: Here's what happened
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Apple Store's 'Pick Up' feature exploited in cybercrime scheme netting over $400,000: Here's what happened

Researchers unveiled a scam exploiting Apple Store's 'Someone else will pick it up' feature, netting over $400,000 in two years. Criminals use stolen credit card info and sell Apple products at discounted prices, complicating investigations due to Apple's internal policies.

For representation purposes only. (Bloomberg)Premium
For representation purposes only. (Bloomberg)

Security researchers recently revealed a sophisticated cybercrime scheme at the Black Hat Asia conference, exposing how criminals have exploited the 'Someone else will pick it up' feature on Apple Store Online to rake in over $400,000 within just two years. 

As per a 9to5mac report, the scam, named "PoisonedApple," relies on a dual-pronged approach that begins with selling Apple products at a discounted price on second-hand online platforms in South Korea, such as Craigslist and eBay. Once a buyer agrees to purchase the product, the criminals use stolen credit card information to buy the actual item from the Apple Store.

However, instead of opting for home delivery, the criminals choose the 'Someone else will pick it up' option, allowing the buyer, who is unaware of the scam, to collect the product from an Apple retail store using a government-issued ID and a QR code/order number, as reported by 9to5mac.

The scheme's architects, Gyuyeon Kim and Hyunho Cho, shared that this approach has been quite profitable. A typical scenario involves a criminal buying an iPhone 15 at a discounted price of $700 and selling it for its actual retail price of $800, yielding a net profit of $700—all at the cost of the credit card holder's loss.

In some cases, Apple's internal policies have complicated investigations, with victims reporting significant delays due to Apple's reluctance to cooperate fully. Despite victims' attempts to alert card companies and law enforcement, these delays have made it more challenging to bring the criminals to justice.

Reportedly, the scheme has largely focused on South Korea and Japan, but researchers believe the perpetrators might be operating out of China, given that the phishing websites were registered with a Chinese internet service provider.

Additionally, the presence of simplified Chinese in dark web forums suggests that this scheme may expand to other regions, potentially including the United States.

Given these revelations, consumers are urged to exercise caution when making online purchases and remain vigilant about deals that appear too good to be true. It is crucial to verify the legitimacy of sellers and platforms and report any suspicious activity to the authorities.

 

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Published: 22 Apr 2024, 06:44 PM IST
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