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iOS 4.3 fights credit-card bait games with password reentry for in-app purchases

Smart parents needn’t worry anymore about in-app purchases in iOS games, they only need to update to iOS 4.3. You’ve probably heard about horror stories involving kids draining their parent’s bank accounts unintentionally because they were lured into buying stuff inside games without even realizing it.  Smurf Villiage is #7 ranked in gross earnings in the App Store and has been seen as one of the biggest offenders.


Deciding enough is enough, Apple has moved to fix this oversight with iOS 4.3, released yesterday.

It now requires users to reenter an iTunes Store password to purchase additional content inside apps (usually in-game items, virtual credits, more levels and what not), The Washington Post reports.

This requirement is enforced even if you’ve just entered your credentials to download an app, a song or an e-book from one of Apple’s online stores:

The Cupertino company’s move affects users of its most recent operating system and comes amid growing concern by federal and state enforcement agencies that consumers, including children, were not adequately informed or aware that they were incurring charges on iTunes accounts because of a 15-minute period that allowed for purchases without a password. Apple said its new device software, iOS 4.3, made available Wednesday, will come with a feature that requires a password when purchases are made within an application after it is downloaded.

The news came after a congressman complained to the FTC over credit-card bait games that lure naive kids to buy stuff right after they’ve downloaded the game.

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