back to article US trade bods: No, your iPhone can't detect CANCER

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has settled an investigation into a pair companies that claimed to have created mobile apps that could detect skin cancer. The commission found that the MelApp and Mole Detective apps had illegally advertised the ability to analyze an image of a mole and then calculate the probability that …

  1. LaeMing

    Don't detect cancer. Don't cause cancer.

    What dang use ARE the things, then!

  2. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Paging - Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard....

    I've always wondered.. is Snake Oil what you get when you render a snake? Or is what you use to lubricate a squeaky snake?

    1. LaeMing

      Re: Paging - Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard....

      It's what snakes use to slither more efficiently.

    2. Ben Bonsall

      Re: Paging - Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard....

      Mostly it's used in snake-polishing.

  3. msknight

    What they want to crack down on....

    ...are the people who bought the app. Honestly, in this day and age...

    1. msknight

      Re: What they want to crack down on....

      ...and thinking about it ... telling them to get to their GP if they really suspect something is wrong.

  4. John Bailey

    But.. But.. But..

    Isn't this kind of thing a curated app store is supposed to stop happening?

    Do Apple not individually thoroughly check every app for wholesomeness and high moral fibre?

  5. Elmer Phud

    Minor slap

    A proper slap-down is required for these who prey on the weak and ill-informed.

    Yes, there is an an element of 'stupid fucks get what they deserve' but many are just people scared shitless by the 'alternative nasty BigPharma' crooks and aresholes with websites advertising 'symposiums' and 'workshops' and other wonderful ways to PWN the desperate.

    (see also 'super-diet' twonks)

    1. The Crow From Below

      Re: Minor slap

      I used to work with a company in the UK that was using phone cameras to take pictures of moles, review them and give you a green, yellow or red score as to whether or not you had cancer. It actually worked as well, so there's no need to call people "stupid fucks get what they deserve" when there really are systems out there that do what is being claimed by these guys.

      1. pepper

        Re: Minor slap

        [Citation needed] when it comes to telling people it really works.

        1. david 12 Silver badge

          Re: Minor slap

          Well I don't know if THIS system really works. But particularly in the USA, "really works" is not a defence for unlicensed medical products, so I'd need a cite to believe that this "really didn't work", and I don't see anything in the FTC declaration that makes that claim. I wonder if all the other similar iphone apps have already been withdrawn?

          In AUS, there are iphone cancer classification apps sold only to registered medical doctors and advertised in the medical magazines.

  6. John Tserkezis

    And yet again...

    "And in 2013, the FDA banned DNA testing startup 23andMe from selling its home testing kits as diagnostic aids,"

    23andMe didn't sell it as a diagnostic aid, it was the idiot users (you can tell by the idiot gene in the results) who looked at some disease, ignored the odds, and went to their doctors demanding they be cured.

    Had this been the case of them advertising it as a diagnostic, they would have just changed the web layout - now, you will never see those type of results again. Ever. Thanks to the idiots.

    I was fortunate that I had mine done before the FDA made them knobble the results. Turns out, I had none of the diseases that I was at "high" risk of, but had some that were marked as average (population average).

    As such, I did not go to my doctor demanding I be cured of things I don't have. Purely co-incedently, I did not indicate for the idiot gene.

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