Latest entry to the “what were they thinking” department: a new Israeli iPhone app that lets users spy on their family and friends, which the developer, Kobi Snir, insisted was for “parental control.”
“I wanted to give parents a way to track their kids, to see with whom they are talking and about what,” Snir told Ynet.
That’s probably not what the thousands of people who downloaded the SpyKey app (it climbed as high as #52 in the entertainment category) were thinking about. The app works like this: for $4.99 you download the application to your iOS device (iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch). Then you download an additional program from the developer’s website which you install on your “target’s” computer. After that, anything written on the target’s computer is automatically shown on your i-device screen. Ynet called it “espionage for dummies.”
It’s fair to guess that most of the folks who ponied up the $5 were more interested in spying on their potentially straying spouses or that malicious pointy haired boss (shout out to Dilbert).
Even more in the “what were they thinking” category was Apple. Why did the iPhone giant – which runs every app through an in-depth review process – approve SpyKey in the first place? Did they buy Snir’s pitch? Or did someone at Apple want to use the app for him or herself perhaps?
We may never know. The app was taken down after just two days.