Apple Claims Helplessness in iTunes Gift Card Scam Class Action

The complaint for this class action highlights a scam perpetrated through purchases of Apple iTunes gift cards. The complaint alleges that scammers are taking advantage of consumers, particularly of older people. (The plaintiffs in this case are between 55 and 71 years old.) Apple portrays itself as helpless to do anything about the scam, but the complaint alleges that this is not true.

The Nationwide Class for this action is all persons in the US who, between January 1, 2015 and the present, bought one or more iTunes gift cards, gave the redemption codes to people unknown to them who asked for the codes under false pretenses, and were not refunded the value of the gift cards by Apple. There are two subclasses, a Contact Subclass and an Elder Subclass.

The complaint asserts that Apple keeps a close watch on its platforms and the products sold on them. It has the right to reject any app that it used for illegal purposes. Apple receives a 30% commission on all app sales, purchases within apps, and subscriptions to apps, the complaint says, and it suggests that it likely receives the same commission on iTunes purchases.

All purchases at the Apple app store must be made through the use of an Apple ID. Accounts must be verified with a telephone number or e-mail address. Also, the complaint says, “Even if consumers wish to use only Apple iTunes gift cards for purchases, Apple requests valid credit card or billing information.”

After a consumer pays for an app, Apple waits for the following fiscal month before paying the app developer. This means that a delay of weeks ensues between purchases and payments to app developers.

How does the scam work? Victims receive an urgent phone call asking them to make payments for things like taxes, hospital bills, bail money, computer repairs, and so on. They are told to do it by buying Apple gift cards and providing the codes on the back of the cards.

The scammers can monetize the cards in two ways. They can make in-app purchases with an app they control, or they can resell the gift card number. In either case, Apple gets 30% of the value of the card.

The complaint alleges that Apple should be able to track the scammers, by referring to such things as the retail store where the card was purchased, the Apple ID used to make purchases, and the apps or other products on which the value of the card was spent. In any case, the complaint says, since Apple retains 30% of the value of the card, it always has the ability to refund this portion of the scammed amount.

The complaint alleges violations of consumer protection laws, aiding and abetting intentional torts, violations of elder abuse laws, and breach of contract, among other things.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Fraud

Most Recent Case Event

Apple Claims Helplessness in iTunes Gift Card Scam Complaint

July 17, 2020

The complaint for this class action highlights a scam perpetrated through purchases of Apple iTunes gift cards. The complaint alleges that scammers are taking advantage of consumers, particularly of older people. (The plaintiffs in this case are between 55 and 71 years old.) Apple portrays itself as helpless to do anything about the scam, but the complaint alleges that this is not true.

Apple Claims Helplessness in iTunes Gift Card Scam Complaint

Case Event History

Apple Claims Helplessness in iTunes Gift Card Scam Complaint

July 17, 2020

The complaint for this class action highlights a scam perpetrated through purchases of Apple iTunes gift cards. The complaint alleges that scammers are taking advantage of consumers, particularly of older people. (The plaintiffs in this case are between 55 and 71 years old.) Apple portrays itself as helpless to do anything about the scam, but the complaint alleges that this is not true.

Apple Claims Helplessness in iTunes Gift Card Scam Complaint
Tags: Failure To Pay For Refund, Fraud, Gift Cards