US senator calls out Carrier IQ software

Dylan Bushell-Embling
02 Dec 2011

The controversy brewing for the last several weeks over the privacy implications of network diagnostics software Carrier IQ has been thrown in the spotlight, drawing the attention of a US senator.

Minnesota senator Al Franken has called on US-based Carrier IQ to answer probing questions about the extent the company's software tracks the habits of smartphone users without their knowledge.

The comedian-turned-politician said he was concerned that Carrier IQ software “captures a broad swath of extremely sensitive information” that appear to have “nothing to do with diagnostics,” AFPreported.

Franken requested answers to a list of questions, including what information the company records and how it is safeguarded, by December 14.

The letter was motivated by findings from security researcher Trevor Eckhart that Carrier IQ software appears to act as a rootkit, log keystrokes - even from encrypted pages - and the content of text messages.

The company has denied recording keystrokes or providing tracking tools, but has admitted it could “probably” read the content of text messages if it wanted to.

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