Spyware Right Out of the Box

Dan Goodin writing for The Register (emphasis mine):

Trevor Eckhart showed how software from a Silicon Valley company known as Carrier IQ recorded in real time the keys he pressed into a stock EVO handset, which he had reset to factory settings just prior to the demonstration. Using a packet sniffer while his device was in airplane mode, he demonstrated how each numeric tap and every received text message is logged by the software.

“But Nick,” you begin, “isn’t it hypocritical for you to be pointing this out after being more passive about Apple’s location tracking issue earlier this year? Are you some sort of paid shill?”

I would counter by pointing out that Apple was tracking locations, but this software (installed on a number of stock Android, BlackBerry and Symbian devices) is tracking what you do and where you do it. Tracking locations is invasive of privacy, but what Carrier IQ does is outrageous.


“runjake” at Hacker News has posted a great analysis of what is covered, but also what is not covered by the Register article.