The security firm did confirm, though, that browser histories are collected when the user first installs an app, something Trend Micro described as a "one-time" occurrence.
After the data breach was found out, Apple removed the app from the app store on September 7th, it is now recommended that anyone who cares about their personal data and has installed this software on their Mac should delete it immediately. This data theft is a big issue when you consider the popularity of Dr. Unarchiver; it was the 12th most popular free app in the U.S. Mac App Store. Already, there are calls for Apple to consider hiring an independent board to oversee app store approvals and make this area more transparent.
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Wardle wrote how the apps have been collecting users' browsing history and transmitting the information to a server based in China - an accusation Trend Micro has slammed as false.
The case seems to call into question Apple's vetting process for apps on its official marketplace. The apps offered by this developer includes Dr. Unarchiver, Dr.
At no point did the app ask permission or inform the user that it was collecting this data. "For example, a sandboxed application from the Mac App Store should not be able to access a user's sensitive browser history", he continued. Dr. Unarchiver and Dr. Browser data was previously stored for three months.
Trend Micro specializes in computer security software.
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Update [September 10, 19:13]: Trend Micro released less than an hour ago a statement denying that its apps were stealing user data.
It added that it had completed an initial investigation which had confirmed that several apps, including Dr Cleaner and Dr Antivirus, had collected and uploaded "a small snapshot of the browser history on a one-time basis" at installation.
Trend Micro is taking customer concerns seriously and has made a decision to remove this browser history collection capability from the products at issue. While they are not as harmful as malware used to steal credit card data, the problem is that unsafe apps are approved and allowed to distribute themselves on the App Store. No comment from Apple has been given thus far.
The tech giant Apple had been alerted to this situation for some time but chose not to take the app from its store. On technicality, the EULAs for these apps did disclose this behavior.
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