Apple Pulls Fake Tor Browser After Media and Security Attention

Apple pulled a fake Tor browser called "Tor Browser" from the App Store on Thursday, a move that took almost three months of notifications from the Tor project, plus a little more than a day of media and security attention. This app was written and submitted by someone not affiliated with the Tor project at all, and reported to the Tor Project itself to be laden with adware/spyware.

As an added bonus, it hung out in the iTunes store for months, even though it was reported to them in late December (and has been reported since). There were a number of articles published Wednesday pointing out that "Tor Browser" was still for sale, and that it was a bogus app to be avoided. It was pulled from the iTunes store earlier today.

Fake Tor Browser: Officially Denied! 

Ars Technica reported Wednesday there weren't a lot of downloads, and that so far nobody reported any sort of malicious outcome after installing it. However, this certainly seems like a big black eye for the iTunes Store, which has been known to put people through all manner of rigamarole in order to get apps approved.

If you are interested in a Tor browser, there is one available, called Onion Browser for 99 cents (US). It is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Tor Project, but by being open source at least it's code that can be reviewed and held accountable if it were to serve up spyware. And since it appears that concern over personal data is only going to grow, this is a good example of the first thing necessary for security: awareness. After all, knowing is half the battle.