BlackBerry Spyware Comes From Carrier? RIM Confirms & Releases Patch

I find it CRAZY that currently the most pervasive spyware/malware for BlackBerry (145,000 users) was released and pushed out by a carrier! ~email from AngryUser

penaltyKid Etisalat in the UAE (United Arab Emirates) pushed out a WAP update last week that prompted users to install a software update to  “improve network performance.” Some researchers at SMobile did some digging (coverage at BBCool) and found that it contained a spyware app that sent a copy of every email inbound and outbound to Etisalat servers. The app did not even do that well and drastically reduced battery life along with causing the device to crash.

RIM has confirmed to the BBC that they did not authorize, develop, or test this application. The app was actually developed by a California company called SS8 which supposedly specializes in “Lawful Interception Solutions” whatever that means. The crazy part is that it looks like Etisalat’s actions are probably legal…

From RIM’s website: (Click here to get the patch to remove this update)

Registration App Remover for BlackBerry smartphones

Recently an update may have been provided to you by Etisalat for your BlackBerry Handheld via a WAP push. The Etisalat update is not a RIM-authorized update and was not developed by RIM. Independent sources have concluded that the Etisalat update is not designed to improve performance of your BlackBerry Handheld, but rather to send received messages back to a central server. RIM has developed this software (“Software”) that will enable you to remove the Etisalat update.

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  1. Nice job, SS8! An ethically-bankrupt company employing inferior developers to create crappy Orwellian products distributed under false pretenses. Anything for a buck, I guess. Bravo!

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