A scheme drawn up by two Chinese students cost Apple nearly $ 1 million. The scheme involved misleading the company’s after-sales service with fake iPhones.

Yangyang Zhou and Quan Jiang are students in the United States who received packages with 20 to 30 fake iPhones. The contraband was later sent to Apple for repairs.

If Apple decided the equipment was legitimate, it would repair or give the customer a new, genuine model. Apple is in the habit of giving new iPhones to customers with broken equipment.

Apple has been fooled with copies of its own equipment

Once they had the new and legitimate equipment, the students would send them back to China for resale. The scheme was discovered by federal prosecutors who eventually registered the crime. 

Agents began to suspect this type of scheme two years ago in April 2017. About 5 suspect boxes were opened with Hong Kong as a destination. The boxes contained mobile phones with smuggling signals.

Students used their personal contact information and friends’ addresses to communicate with Apple. It was alleged that iPhones did not care. Jiang had more than 3,000 claims for reparation in his name. 

Apple admitted that it completed 1,493 of the orders, translating into a loss of $ 895,000. All other requests were rejected, however. 

It seems that the copies of the iPhone are getting so realistic that they even deceive the company’s own technicians. This is a problem that may seem small but it is serious if applied on a large scale.

Apple is not alone in the circle of companies that are victims of schemes. More than $ 17 billion was stolen from companies by schemes in 2017 in the United States.


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