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Carrier IQ Software Allows Android Phones to Do Some Impressive Spying



Today’s theme looks like it is about security and companies that like to spy on our mobile device usage. Earlier we posted about this situation with Apple and now we are pointing to another situation with Android and other devices.

Trevor Eckhart took a look at what Carrier IQ, software that is installed on most Android, Nokia, and Blackberry devices, actually logs. He’s produced a video that shows his results. And those results are, well, pretty amazing. Carrier IQ actually logs every keypress, including text messages, and encrypted web searches. That info is sent back to Carrier IQ.

Eckhart calls this a rootkit and Carrier IQ says the logging is to gather data to improve customer experience. The bottom line is that this is sure interesting behavior and I would have to agree with Eckhart, something that users could opt out of.

Note also that Eckhart raised the ire of Carrier IQ when he announced his findings last week and was threatened by the company with legal action. The company backed off of the threats when the Electronic Frontier Foundation took up Eckhart’s cause. Carrier IQ denies that its software logs keystrokes but the video clearly shows otherwise.

Via Wired



  1. John in Norway

    12/01/2011 at 4:44 am

    Not sure I understand this. My phone, a Samsung Galaxy Note, doesn’t have any of the apps or services that he mentions running.

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