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Carrier IQ saga continues, Senator Al Franken still demanding answers

Posted: , by Nick T.

Carrier IQ saga continues, Senator Al Franken still demanding answers
By now, even if you are not a smartphone aficionado, you have probably heard about the whole Carrier IQ story. In a nutshell, the controversial software was discovered to be operational on millions of handsets worldwide and was accused of collecting personal data without the user's consent. And while the company behind it claims that Carrier IQ is not as malicious as it seems, others are still not so sure about that.

Senator Al Franken is one of the figures whose attention was drawn by the Carrier IQ saga. On December 1, he contacted the makers of Carrier IQ and demanded an explanation as to how the software operates, what data it collects, and who has access to the records. Letters were also written to AT&T, Sprint, Samsung, HTC, T-Mobile, and Motorola, all of which confirmed using the software. By now, Sen. Franken has been responded to by all but T-Mobile and Motorola, and here is the statement that he posted on his personal web page after reviewing their answers:

“I appreciate the responses I received, but I'm still very troubled by what's going on,... People have a fundamental right to control their private information. After reading the companies' responses, I'm still concerned that this right is not being respected. The average user of any device equipped with Carrier IQ software has no way of knowing that this software is running, what information it is getting, and who it is giving it to-and that's a problem. It appears that Carrier IQ has been receiving the contents of a number of text messages-even though they had told the public that they did not. I'm also bothered by the software's ability to capture the contents of our online searches-even when users wish to encrypt them. So there are still many questions to be answered here and things that need to be fixed.”

The companies' exact responses are available for anyone to read, but Sen. Franken's statement summarizes them pretty well. T-Mobile and Motorola are expected to come up with a response by December 20, but we doubt that it will differ in nature from the ones Sen. Franken has gotten by now. Sadly, the Carrier IQ software appears to be a threat to subscribers' privacy to some extent, even though its makers refuse to admit it. Well, all we can do is wait and see whether carriers and manufacturers will finally do something in order to address the issue.

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posted on 16 Dec 2011, 07:19 3

1. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4888; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

There is just something very despicable with the way Carrier IQ is handling themselves. What is the point of such a company? What are they doing with this information? Who are they sharing it with? Why not be upfront on this? Also why are so many carriers included in these blatant invasions of privacy?

In other words, why does Carrier IQ even exist? & how can the carriers allow them or work with them on their networks?

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 13:12 2

6. GeekMovement (unregistered)

exactly my question as well. the other phones without carrierIQ is doing perfectly fine off without it! GO AWAY CARRIER IQ WE DONT WANT YOU~~~

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 07:39 2

2. rendHELL (Posts: 304; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

i'm guessing they are sharing it with CIA?

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 07:46 2

3. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4888; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

You know what, you maybe 100% correct. The government does work in mysterious ways. It's just that companies should never be allowed to compromise people's privacy without their consent.

I am sure we haven't heard the last of this & frankly this is going to get more ugly before it gets better.

posted on 17 Dec 2011, 11:18

8. roscuthiii (Posts: 2246; Member since: 18 Jul 2010)

I pointed that out as a joke when the hoopla all started with Carrier IQ.

CarrierIQ - CIQ? Almost CIA. Just Q & A interchanged. Why Q&A? They've got questions, we've got the answers they want.

That was a joke then, but now... I'm not so sure. You may be right.

I wouldn't doubt that the government inquiries aren't just a dog & pony show to placate the masses and all they're really asking this CIA, err CIQ, is how in the hell they let themselves get caught.

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 08:01 2

4. arcq12 (Posts: 733; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)

maybe mr. senator is cheating with his wife thats why he is very concern about this.. any of the information collected obviously wont be available to anybody.. and as i've mentioned earlier, this is only for 'national security' purposes..

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 13:33

7. rendHELL (Posts: 304; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

hhaha nice one....

posted on 16 Dec 2011, 09:27

5. Gawain (Posts: 426; Member since: 15 Apr 2010)

Don't worry, Franken will do a comedy skit on the Senate floor and the issue will be appropriately toxic for anyone to touch. This clown is such an opportunist. There is nothing here!! The carriers retain more data than this CarrierIQ tool. We need to be able to attach pics with our posts, because this is a "double facepalm" moment...

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