U.S. Senator. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), is requesting Apple and Google to clarify how they prevent fraudulent cryptocurrency apps on the Apple Store and Google Play Store.
The lawmaker sent two letters addressed to Apple CEO Tim Cook and Google CEO Sundar Pichai on Wednesday 27th July in this regard. Senator Sherrod is concerned about scams that continue to rob millions of dollars from innocent investors.
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This was after the FBI reported details of fraudulent cryptocurrency apps and wallets that purport to be sound investment opportunities.
In the report published on 21st July, the FBI disclosed that 244 investors, within a year, have been scammed out of $42.7 million through fraudulent mobile applications that claim to be legitimate crypto investment platforms.
The FBI report stated that cyber fraudsters are trying to cash in and take advantage of the rising interest in both crypto investing and mobile banking.
The agency said since last October, it has witnessed scammers contacting U.S. investors with fraudulent offers of crypto investment services and convincing these investors to download fake mobile apps.
Such bogus apps often use the names and logos of legitimate US firms and fraudsters who create fake websites with this information to lure and swindle investors.
Senator Sherrod, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee in his letter sent to both Apple & Google challenged the companies.
He wrote, “Cyber criminals have stolen company logos, names and other identifying information of crypto firms and then created fake mobile apps to trick unsuspecting investors into believing they are conducting business with a legitimate crypto firm. Alarmingly, far too many investors have fallen victim.”
Brown mentioned that it is essential for these app stores to have the proper measures in place to prevent fraudulent mobile application activity.
In the letter, Sen. Brown asked for details about these firms’ safeguards to prevent fraudulent activity in their app stores.
Senator Brown wrote: “In recent years, crypto trading platforms and exchanges have experienced a surge in popularity with millions of investors downloading mobile apps to trade and invest in digital assets. Millions of Americans use mobile apps to invest in unregulated digital assets, including cryptocurrencies.”
Brown further asked Apple and Google to provide details about the app review processes that these firms take before approving cryptocurrency apps to operate in their app stores, including steps they take to prevent fraudulent crypto apps and other information.
The lawmaker has requested both companies to provide responses to the letters by 10th August.
On Thursday, the Senator’s committee held a hearing examining scams in the crypto industry.