Angry parents sue Apple over in-app purchases

Angry parents sue Apple over in-app purchases
Craig Chapple

By Craig Chapple

April 17th 2012 at 10:34AM

Minors 'induced' by tech giant to buy game currency 'without parental authorisation', claims lawsuit

Angry parents have filed a class-action lawsuit against Apple claiming it is too easy for children to rack up in-game charges on apps.

As reported by the BBC, the group claim that they
“incurred charges for game-related voidable purchases that the minor was induced by Apple to make, without the parents’ and guardians’ knowledge or authorisation’.

Apple’s current system means users can purchase in-game items through just entering a password after the initial credit card details have been saved.

The lawsuit, led by Garen Meguerian claims however that until recently, minors could buy game currency for up to 15 minutes after a password had been entered, without the need to re-enter it.

It also claims that since the changes, children aware of their parents’ password can still purchase game currency in one click to sums of $99.99 or more without parental consent.

The case, which includes allegations of breach of contract and unjust enrichment, has been green lit by US District Judge Edward Davilla in Northern California, despite Apple's calls to throw out the case.

The lawsuit follows an investigation by the US Federal Trade Commission last year that looked into reports of children spending their parents’ money on mobile social games, with games such as Capcom’s Smurfs Village coming under scrutiny.