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Carrier IQ backlash begins with Sprint snub

17 Dec 2011
Carrier IQ detector for Android

Carrier IQ has been taking a beating in the press in recent weeks, but now it seems that the controversy over the installation of the company's tracking software on mobile handsets is starting to have real consequences.

US carrier Sprint has confirmed that it has terminated its dealings with Carrier IQ, and will no longer pull data from customers' handsets via the Carrier IQ mobile client software.

"We have weighed customer concerns and we have disabled use of the tool so that diagnostic information and data is no longer being collected," the company said. "We are further evaluating our options regarding this diagnostic software as well as Sprint's diagnostics needs."

The snub is not surprising. Carrier IQ has been under intense scrutiny ever since a security researcher found that the company's software records keystrokes, text messages and web browsing activity, and well as general traffic and networking performance data.

Carrier IQ has since claimed that the collection of private data was down to a software bug which left handsets in debug mode, but the damage has been done and everyone from consumer rights groups to members of US Senate have called the company out.

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Shaun Nichols

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

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