T-Mobile and Sprint have recently decided to chime in on the conversation regarding their use of Carrier IQ, a metrics tool used to gather statistical data. Via some internal and unreleased memos regarding Carrier IQ, both carriers have discussed, as expected, its intended use which was to simply log data for troubleshooting and to improve the overall network performance for each respective carrier. Check out their responses below in an interview with The Verge:
T-Mobile: “T-Mobile does not use the tool to obtain the content of text, email or voice messages, or the specific destinations of customers’ Internet activity. It is not used for marketing purposes. T-Mobile uses the Carrier IQ diagnostic tool to gather device data for effective troubleshooting and to increase the overall device and network performance for our customers.
Sprint: “Sprint uses the Carrier IQ data to only understand device performance on our network so we can identify when issues are occurring. … Even with Carrier IQ, Sprint does not and cannot look at or record contents of messages, photos, videos, etc., nor do we sell or provide a direct feed of Carrier IQ data to anyone outside Sprint.
In addition, T-Mobile also went one step further and listed the devices on its network currently running the Carrier IQ software. Hit the break for the full list of
While the extent of the damage that Carrier IQ has caused is still out to jury, it appears that a few more companies are being added to the lawsuit mix. The only people that haven’t heard of Carrier IQ are those that have shunned technology, but if you are one of those folk that don’t know what the exact controversy is, you should read this. The new suit brings Apple, Motorola and cellular carriers, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, into the foray.
The suits were filled by Sianni & Straite, of Wilmington DE, and both Keefe Bartels and Eichen, and Crutchlow Zaslow & McElroy of New Jersey. They are being handled in a Wilmington Delaware federal court. All companies named are being accused of violating the Federal Wiretap Act, the Stored Electronic Communications Act, and the Federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. While companies involved in this controversy are placing blame else where, it appears that T-Mobile may have allegedly installed Carrier IQ on devices without phone maker’s knowledge and participation.
It is safe to say that this controversy rocked the smart phone world and that the fallout from this will be monumental. As companies continue to shake the blame the waters will continue to become muddier. There are those out there that are doing there part to rid phones of Carrier IQ and for those of you curious on how to do that please go here.
Please forgive us if Carrier IQ seems to be a constant item in newsreels around the world lately. However, we think it’s kind of important so we’ll do our best to summarize topics surrounding it as best we can. If you’re not familiar with what Carrier IQ is or does, check out our own head honcho, Rob Nazarian’s summary here. In recent news, Android hacker and pro security buff Dan Rosenberg, performed his own inductive study by reverse engineering Carrier IQ’s software. Here’s what he found:
CarrierIQ does a lot of bad things. It’s a potential risk to user privacy, and users should be given the ability to opt out of it.
This whole Carrier IQ thing just hit us like a storm, didn’t it? All the sudden everyone is up in arms, worried weather or not their beloved Android device is reporting every little move they make. In case you missed this huge Carrier IQ fiasco, check out our previous report explaining the in’s and out’s of the whole ordeal and come back here to learn how to find out if your device is currently harboring the Carrier IQ tracking software.
Today, a new app was released into the Android Market solely designed to check your device to see if the CIQ software is present. For those of you who are Verizon customers, apparently your device is free and clear of the CIQ program (but who’s to say they don’t use something different?), so you need not worry about checking your device. In case you still want proof for yourself, and for all the other peep’s out there, download the new Voodoo Carrier IQ Detector found through the Voodoo link below. Root status is not required and this app should work across all devices and manufacturers. Since this app is fresh off the press, the developer claims that “it’s unfinished” and “results are not reliable yet,” so don’t get all upset if you are not happy with the outcome, it may be reading a false positive or something similar. App updates will be issued in the near future, and hopefully soon it will be a reliable source, but for now it seems to be producing fairly accurate results (All of my Verizon devices have come up clean). Let us know the outcome in the comments below, I am curious to see which devices/carriers use the software.
Voodoo Carrier IQ Detector
[via Droid Life]
Carrier IQ has become the buzz lately, but not for good reasons. It all started when a researcher named Trevor Eckhart posted evidence that Carrier IQ logs every text message, Google search, and phone number typed and reports back to the phone carrier. Shortly after, Carrier IQ sent a cease and desist letter to Eckhart claiming he violated copyright law by publishing Carrier IQ training manuals online. Eckhart didn’t back down as he enlisted the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group, which resulted in Carrier IQ backing off their legal threats.
What is Carrier IQ? They market themselves to carriers as a program that can “measure performance and user experience with no visible impact to customers.” Eckhart found that in his HTC device, the program not only recorded information about app activity and battery life, but also records when users press any key on the phone along with text messages. The information is then sent back to Carrier IQ’s servers. Why would Carrier IQ need to record such information if all they’re trying to do is improve users’ experiences by collecting data on dropped calls, signal quality, and other troubleshooting problems? At least this is what they told Wired.