What is KORTV? Why has the KORTV app appeared on my iPhone or iPad: Mysterious iOS app reportedly isn't malicious, can be deleted like a standard app

Despite Apple's high security measures, iOS users are reporting claims of a mysterious KORTV app appearing on their devices despite not downloading it themselves. Is this evidence of an iOS hack, or something innocent? Here, we explain what the KORTV app is, how the app appeared on your iPhone or iPad and how to remove it.

One long-standing reason that users favour iOS over Android is security - while Android is open-source and is more susceptible to security issues, iOS has always been seen as heavily protected, mainly due to the way that Apple vets every single app that appears on its App Store. However, users are reporting claims of a mysterious KORTV app appearing on their devices despite not downloading it themselves. Is this evidence of an iOS hack, or something more innocent? Here, we explain what the KORTV app is, why the app appeared on your iPhone or iPad and how to remove it.

You might also be interested in: How to secure your iPhone from hackers | iOS security risks, and what to do | Do Macs get viruses, and do I need an antivirus? | How private is your iPhone data?

What is KORTV, and why has it appeared on my iPhone or iPad?

Before we go any further, let's first explain just what the KORTV app is, and why it has mysteriously appeared on your iPhone or iPad. First of all, we should probably mention that the KORTV app we're talking about in this app isn't the same KORTV app available in the App Store, providing users with live streams of Korean entertainment. No - the app we're talking about is one that appears on iPhones and iPads with an icon similar to the old Passbook app, which can be seen in the above screenshot.

This KORTV app appears to be an empty app that iOS developers speculate may have accidentally been included within an Apple TV project file, prompting the app to be automatically installed on all linked iOS devices once installed on an Apple TV as it does with other universal ap ps. In our experience, we've found this to be the case when users install Sky's Now TV app on the Apple TV, despite having an iPhone and iPad-specific version also available to download from the App Store.

While it may be possible that the team behind the Now TV app also developed the KORTV app, we've found no confirmation of this online. We do believe that the app is harmless - its only function is documenting the time and date when tapping the + icon in the top right hand corner - but one developer speculates that this could a sign of a serious security issue.

Remember when Chinese developers were using a compromised version of Xcode to develop apps? The developer suggests that this could be evidence that software developers outside of China are using the compromised software, although Apple claims that users should receive a notification if an infected app appears on your iOS device and we received no such notification in our experience.

How to remove the KORTV app from your iPhone or iPad

So, how do you remove the seemingly innocent KORTV app from your iPhone or iPad? The easiest way to remove it is to delete the app as you normally would by tapping and holding on the app icon until it wiggles, then tapping the 'X' in the top-right hand corner. While this should remove the app from your device entirely, those that are worried about security can go one step further and reset the iPhone or iPad - for more information on how to do that, take a look at our article: How to reset an iPhone or iPad.

As well as this, users can also disable the automatic install of apps on all linked iOS devices. This should stop the KORTV app (or any other apps) from being automatically installed on your iPhone or iPad in future, when downloading a related app from the Apple TV App Store. To do this, simply head to the Settings app, tap iTunes & App Updates and make sure the App option is toggled off.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags iPhone

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

By Lewis Painter

Macworld U.K.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?