Over 1,500 complaints of unwanted sexual approaches via popular social networking products in the App Store have been uncovered. A number of complaints involved children.
Random Chat Apps
The complaints refer to ‘random chat apps’. These connect strangers in video conversations. The Washington Post sifted through reviews of six pieces of such software, five of which were in the App Store top 100 for social networking. The services it monitored were Monkey, Yubo, ChatLive, Chat for Strangers, Skout, and Holla. 1,500 of the reviews referenced uncomfortable sexual situations.
For example, around two percent of all iOS reviews on Monkey reported unwanted sexual advances. Furthermore, at least 19 percent of ChatLive reviews indicated a similar issue. Spokespeople for the Yubo and Skout insisted they were continuing to focus on user safety.
The newspaper also conducted interviews with teens and parents, as well as experts. It concluded that the reviews it found indicated a broader problem on the iOS ecosystem.
Apple has long made a play of the safety and review procedures of the App Store. In a statement, a company spokesperson said:
If the purpose of these apps is not inappropriate, we want to give developers a chance to ensure they are properly complying with the rules, but we don’t hesitate to remove them from the App Store if §they don’t.