The FBI disclosed this weekend that data gathered by Carrier IQ software is used by it for "law enforcement purposes", but refused to give details of how it has done so.
Responding to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by Muckrock, the FBI said that it held relevant records but that their release could interfere with pending or prospective law enforcement proceedings.
The request asked for "manuals, documents or other written guidance used to access or analyze data gathered by programs developed or deployed by Carrier IQ."
Muckrock's Michael Morisy says he plans to appeal the FBI's decision: "What is still unclear is whether the FBI used Carrier IQ's software in its own investigations, whether it is currently investigating Carrier IQ, or whether it is some combination of both."
Carrier IQ came to public attention after threatening a security researcher who reported on the functionality of its software, which is installed on cellphones by some carriers and handset manufacturers. The software, described by Google chairman Eric Schmidt as a "keylogger", is capable of logging and transmitting everything typed by users, though Carrier IQ insists that it does not do so.
The researcher, Trevor Eckhart, spotted suspicious logging activity and demonstrated how the software reacts when users interacted with their cellphones. Sprint, T-Mobile, and AT&T all acknowledge using Carrier IQ for diagnostic purposes, but say that they do not use it to maintain records of individual users' activity.
Carrier IQ has not yet returned a call for comment.
Read the request and the FBI denial: FBI: Carrier IQ files used for "law enforcement purposes" [Muckrock]
Photo: Trevor Eckhart
On the crowdfunding site Massdrop, board-game fan Cassidy Williams is taking preorders for a $160 Scrabble-themed mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Brown switches (if you've got a mechanical keyboard kicking around that you'd like to convert, you can get the $47 keycap set instead).
Sony’s Digital Mavica FD was a digital camera that saved pictures directly onto floppy disk: a wonderful convenience in an age when flash cards (and their readers) were expensive and rare. Images were saved at up to 1280×960 (1.2 megapixels!) and “not that bad”, and it takes up to 6 seconds to save them to […]
I think all modern computers should look like these vintage ones photographed by James Ball a couple of years ago. [via Wired]
The Nintendo Switch is king when it comes to gaming on the go, but it’s tough to lose yourself in Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Skyrim if your battery dies out. That’s where this Nintendo Switch Battery Charger Case comes into play. Built exclusively for Nintendo Switch, this pack allows for uninterrupted charging while you play, […]
Creative designers play a pivotal role in engaging target audiences and customers, and while companies are eager to bring more of these professionals on board, you’ll have a hard time getting your foot in the door if you’re not using the industry’s best tools. From Adobe to Maya, the eduCBA Design & Multimedia Lifetime Subscription Bundle […]
As more companies aim to reel in costs and boost productivity, project managers are becoming an essential part of many operations, and they’re paid handsomely for their expertise. But, while demand is high, you’ll have a hard time getting your foot in the door if you’re not toting the right certifications. The Official Lean Six Sigma […]