While Obama slept, China Flooded the US with Millions of Devices to Spy on American Consumers
In July 2016 Beijing-based LeEco snapped up top US electronics maker Vizio for $2 billion.
The company now is accused of spying on US consumers without their consent.
In a statement, Vizio said customers’ “non-personal identifiable information may be shared with select partners … to permit these companies to make, for example, better-informed decisions regarding content production, programming and advertising.”
Vizio’s actions appear to go beyond what others are doing in the emerging interactive television industry. Vizio rivals Samsung and LG Electronics only track users’ viewing habits if customers choose to turn the feature on. And unlike Vizio, they don’t appear to provide the information in a form that allows advertisers to reach users on other devices.
Privacy activists are hoping the Trump and Republican government will nix this deal.
Vizio is not alone.
Androids Made in China
According to a FOX Business Network report Chinese manufacturers loaded over 700 million Android devices with spyware.
Software from a Chinese company was found pre-installed in an estimated 700 million Android devices. Pre-installed, meaning it was already on the phone when you bought it.
The spyware was loaded on phones, TV, cars, etc.
The spyware allowed Chinese officials to listen to your phone calls, read all your text messages, steal your family and friends contacts, and even remotely control your devices.
Android Police reported on this shocking spyware discovery.
Mobile security is a huge issue, but most consumers tend to think that at least a brand new phone is safe. That assumption may be in error, according to security research firm Kryptowire. In a new report Kryptowire documents the inclusion of software tools collectively called Adups, which allegedly shipped on phones like the Blu R1 HD and other devices sold internationally, including the US market via Amazon and Best Buy.
If true, the report is a damning accusation for the software’s creator Shanghai Adups Technology and its manufacturer and carrier partners. Kryptowire claims that Adups has the capability to collect IMEI data, SMS logs and contents, call logs, contact names, and IP addresses, then send the data back to third party servers in China without notification or permission from users. Said data was collected and encrypted every 24 to 72 hours in the testing phase, then transmitted to two specific IP addresses owned by Adups. Even worse, the software can remotely install new applications with system-level permissions.
Adups bills itself as a company that supplies services for over-the-air software delivery. Though Adups does not exclusively service cell phones (its marketing material includes connected cars, home monitoring equipment, retail sales software, and wearable tech), it claims 700 million active users in over 200 countries. The remote backup and install capabilities of the Adups software aren’t unheard of, but they’re generally available only to manufacturers and carriers, and aren’t usually paired with access to personally identifiable information like contact names.
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