Sprint Carrier IQ

December 17, 2011 by staff 

Sprint Carrier IQ, More than two weeks ago, security researcher Trevor Eckhart posted a video about Carrier IQ, an obscure software installed on approximately 150 million smartphones. The 17-minute video sparked a firestorm not only because it alleged the software logged numerous details about users’ activities, but also because it did so without their knowledge.

But this week, two wireless carriers that use Carrier IQ’s software said customers should not have been surprised that some of their activities were being tracked. In letters to Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who asked them to explain how they used the software, AT&T and Sprint said Carrier IQ’s capabilities were clearly outlined in their privacy policies.

AT&T gives “clear notice” to customers that “we collect network, performance and usage information from our network and customer devices, and we use that information to maintain and improve our network and their wireless experience,” wrote Timothy McKone, AT&T’s executive vice president for federal relations.

“Sprint believes customers expect service providers and network operators to take reasonable technological steps to maintain the performance of their networks and device functionality in order to effectively deliver call and data services to users,” wrote Vonya McCann, senior vice president for government affairs at Sprint. “Sprint’s privacy policy contains notice of the information we collect.”

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