FBI says Carrier IQ files used for "law enforcement purposes"

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Mon Dec 12 23:34:23 PST 2011


FBI says Carrier IQ files used for "law enforcement purposes"

By Rob Beschizza at 12:42 pm Monday, Dec 12

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

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 

More information about the cypherpunks-legacy mailing list