It’s not just Facebook who has been accused of accessing private user information. Trevor Eckhart, an Android developer had recently become the talk of the techville when he shed light on a certain security software from a company called Carrier iQ that is capable of recording users’ phone activity. Basically, it is mobile tracking software used for quality checks. This software, which has been stealthily pre-loaded on millions of handsets gets further scrutinized by Trevor. He now discloses a 17 minute video displaying that Carrier iQ software can report everything that a user does. It can keep a track of the user's SMSes, key presses, GPS and so on.
Secretly tracks mobile activities
The video shows logging of texts messages, encrypted web searches and much more. The 25-year old developer had irked the software maker by shedding light on their secret mobile tracking tool. He was even threatened to face legal action. Reportedly, the company backed off later and revealed that Carrier IQ’s software only helps with “gathering information off the handset to understand the mobile-user experience, where phone calls are dropped, where signal quality is poor, why applications crash and battery life.”
The video shows that the software is logging Eckhart’s online search results, inspite of using the HTTPS version of Google to hide searches from spying elements. “Every button you press in the dialer before you call, it already gets sent off to the IQ application,” reveals the video. The content is secretly sent to Carrier IQ’s servers.
This pre-installed software can be turned off only by rooting the phone and replacing the operating system. Moreover, phone activities are reported to Carrier IQ, even after you stop the wireless service and use only Wi-Fi.
Mobile devices have almost become a hub of corporate and personal data. Such stealthy intrusion could have worse implications. Companies should not be allowed to employ such tracking tools without the consent of the phone owner. What are your views? Do let us know.
Check the video to know more.
Publish date: November 30, 2011 2:27 pm| Modified date: December 18, 2013 9:03 pm