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Carriers Possibly Spying on BlackBerry Users with Carrier IQ – Definitely on Android

penaltyKid

The latest craziness to sweet the carrier conspiracy underground is a company called Carrier IQ that is supposedly helping quite a few carriers spy on their customers. Security researcher Trevor Eckhart posted video proof of how Carrier IQ logs every text message, Google search, and phone number typed on an Android phone. He offhand mentions that it also is done on HTC, BlackBerry, and Nokia phones without going into any specifics.

I have been trying to dig in further but have not seen any more mention that any such Carrier IQ app on BlackBerry phones from carriers. The thing is I highly doubt it is since it would either have to be built in by RIM into the core OS or have to be a third party module that somebody would definitely have spotted by now. I doubt it would be built into the core because this is almost the same case as when Etisalat in the UAE pushed software to their users BlackBerrys that monitored their emails. RIM clearly responded in this PDF saying they had nothing to do with it and offered a clear setup to remove it.

In other words somebody would have spotted it by now if it was on BlackBerrys. Still I am dying to know for sure…

12 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. I know Bell is testing software to let them see/take over our devices.

    I called them last week about my WSoD issues and they said they couldnt support me until I was back on .261 and i asked them how they knew and the CSR told me that they are running experimental software to see whats going on with the phones.

    • They may be testing that software, how they knew is a flat out lie they told you. The BIS admin tool has always granted access to see what OS customers are on depending on the relationship with RIM, be it a call center who can call RIM for external help or a call center who has no access to RIM support.

      • thanks for chiming in bla1ze.

        Every other time I had called them, they always had asked and I always told them that I was running Bells latest official, same as I did when I called last week.

        But back to the software, the rep said they are testing the new software for smartphone support, but he said it probably wouldn’t make it out of testing.

        • Yeah, I’ve heard of the Bell software before as well though I heard about it a long time ago so assumed it was never put into effect even back then.

          As for the CarrierIQ stuff, while there is no doubt a client for BlackBerry has been made available by CarrierIQ — I can’t, at this point say one way or another that it exists on any BB devices out there. IMO I can’t see RIM allowing it to exist in such a manner but.. stranger things have happened and I’ve not really dug through many other carriers files to see what was within.

          More specifically Sprint and Verizon as they are supposedly two of the biggest use case scenarios for CarrierIQ.. though, now I wanna go download every OS from them and poke arnd, lol.

          (ps: Not to rehash it but those questions your carrier ask.. ie: device, IMEI.. they have that all available as well as your PIN, IMSI, ICCID, provisioning profile, service book access and more through the BIS admin tool… they know what model device you’re calling from even if you don’t)

      • Hey Bla1ze. You have dug around the BlackBerry OS files for awhile. What do you make of this claim that it has some sort of internal spyware built in. Personally the easiest way to discount the theory is that India and all those other countries wouldn’t be throwing such a hissy fit about monitoring BlackBerrys if it was this easy… :)

        • Right now — without putting my foot in my mouth, I believe the client exists, carrierIQ has it to offer to people but I don’t believe its been put to use on BlackBerry devices. Someone, somewhere — IMO would have spotted something by now but again — I don’t have much experience with the OS’ from those noted to be bigger supporters of the CarrierIQ stuff either. I have no reason to be looking in Sprint / Verizon files.

  2. At least Blackberry’s aren’t spontaneously combusting on airplanes.

  3. MobileSyrup say’s they’ve had confirmations from a few Canadian Carriers:

    Rogers has done an investigation and has confirmed that Carrier IQ is not present on any of its devices. On Twitter they stated that “Hi all. I’m happy to confirm that we have investigated and Carrier IQ is NOT on any of our devices”. TELUS also confirmed that they have not installed Carrier IQ on any of their devices. We are waiting to hear back from Bell.

    • RIM says no:

      “RIM does not pre-install the Carrier IQ app on BlackBerry smartphones or authorize its carrier partners to install the Carrier IQ app before sales or distribution,” RIM said.

      “RIM also did not develop or commission the development of the Carrier IQ application, and has no involvement in the testing, promotion, or distribution of the app.”

  4. Funny how no cared about this back when it was news…… In September.

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