Alternative app stores? For Apple, they would only bring malware and scams

Apple strongly criticizes a bill in the United States that would require substantial changes to the App Store.

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Apple’s Senior Director of Government Affairs, Timothy Powderly, sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee advising that these changes to the App Store would spread malware, ransomware and scams, with serious risks to people. consumer safety.

The American Innovation and Choice Online Act and the Open Markets Act would prevent “dominant platforms” from abusing their gatekeeper power by favoring their products and services over those of the competition. In practice, the legislation would allow for so-called sideloading, i.e. the ability to install apps through alternative app stores, bypassing Apple’s App Store and all privacy measures enabled by the company, especially in the past two years.

Apple says both proposals would harm competition and discourage innovation, making it harder to protect the privacy and security of iPhones and iPads: “The laws will favor those who want to use user data irresponsibly and help bad guys spread malware, ransomware and its scams. »

“All of this puts consumers at risk because of the real risk of privacy and security breaches. In addition to making privacy and security nearly impossible to defend, the laws would effectively allow scammers to completely circumvent Apple’s privacy and security protections. This is possible because the bills would require the “sideloading” or direct installation of software from the Internet in order to circumvent Apple-designed privacy and security protections, including human control of each application and each application update.

The App Store and our employee review process protect customers from malicious and dangerous code, and consumers would lose that protection if these proposals were implemented. Latest studies have shown that iOS devices contain 98% less malware than Android devices, thanks to the efficiency of the App Store.

Millions of Americans could be tricked into installing malware and unwanted software and would be attacked by malware and more. Authorities should not ignore the benefits consumers receive from Apple.

Among other things, the bills would undo much of the progress Congress has made to bolster U.S. competitiveness, rebuild supply chains, and encourage domestic manufacturing while encoding a structural advantage for foreign competitors in the vibrant tech sector. . »

Apple therefore urges the Senate Judiciary Committee not to approve either proposal and the company says it is ready to work together to find solutions that “resolve all competition issues, while protecting consumer privacy and security”.

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