Josh Constine, reporting for TechCrunch:
Facebook and Google were far from the only developers openly
abusing Apple’s Enterprise Certificate program meant for companies
offering employee-only apps. A TechCrunch investigation uncovered
a dozen hardcore pornography apps and a dozen real-money gambling
apps that escaped Apple’s oversight. The developers passed Apple’s
weak Enterprise Certificate screening process or piggybacked on a
legitimate approval, allowing them to sidestep the App Store and
Cupertino’s traditional safeguards designed to keep iOS family
friendly. Without proper oversight, they were able to operate
these vice apps that blatantly flaunt Apple’s content policies.
The situation shows further evidence that Apple has been
neglecting its responsibility to police the Enterprise Certificate
program, leading to its exploitation to circumvent App Store rules
and forbidden categories.
I had no idea until this Facebook thing broke just how many developers are using the “enterprise” system to effectively sideload native iOS apps, bypassing the App Store. TechCrunch has a list of a few dozen here, but the full list is way longer. Dozens and dozens of bootleg content apps like this one, which just changes its cert every few weeks. Either Apple has been purposefully looking the other way on this, or they’ve been asleep at the switch and a reckoning is coming.
★ Tuesday, 12 February 2019