Carrier IQ comes under FTC and FCC scrutiny

“We are complying with all investigations at this time as we have nothing to hide.”
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor
Federal investigators are investigating allegations that Carrier IQ software was used to track user actvity and send that information back to the carriers without user consent, according to the Washington Post.

According to the report, executives from Carrier IQ have traveled to Washington to meet with officials from the Federal Trade Commission, the government body responsible for enforcing privacy laws, as well as officials from the Federal Communications Commission. This information comes via officials who spoke on condition of anonymity. Carrier IQ has confirmed that it is cooperating with federal officials.

“We are complying with all investigations at this time as we have nothing to hide,” said Mira Woods, of Carrier IQ’s marketing communications department. “We have been completely transparent through this process.”

Things are going from bad to worse for Carrier IQ. Earlier this month the tech world became aware of Carrier IQ - software installed onto millions of handsets designed to send usage and diagnostic data back to the carriers. Initially the company denied that there was anything sinister about the logging software, but it has now admitted that a bug in the software meant that SMS messages ‘may have’ been captured.

The capabilities of Carrier IQ were first bought to light by 25-year-old Trevor Eckhart.

Data leakage, whether that be deliberate or accidental, is a serious matter. It represents a breach of trust between consumer and service provider. While I can see the benefits that a tool like Carrier IQ bring to the networks and handset makers, we can’t lightly abandon privacy for the sake of a better service.


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