How to Remove Carrier IQ from phone

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If you think you have the hidden application, known as Carrier IQ, stored on your smart phone you are not alone. There are over 140 million smartphones that could have it right now. This includes Android, Blackberry and iOS devices. Here is Android developer Trevor Eckhart has posted a video in YouTube showing users the application simply logged almost everything performed on the device. Carrier IQ could record everything, including text messages, phone calls and web browsing history. Now you might think this is some sort of virus, (guess it really depends how you define virus), however it is not.

Developers confirmed that the application is not a malware, but a service that can be sold. Carrier IQ states that its purpose is “to make the phones work better.”If however, if the application is recording and sending data, it is considered illegal. This results to an immediate violation of the Wiretap act. Eckhart’s original report has shown that Carrier IQ has been discovered on HTC and Samsung devices, and that CarrierIQ counts Sprint among their domestic carrier clients. AT&T also appears to use Carrier IQ on their devices AT&T states that Carrier IQ is indeed preloaded on the HTC Vivid. Other carriers, including Verizon, Vodafone, and O2 have all denied that they use Carrier IQ on their devices.

If all this makes you worry and you want to know if you have it here are some steps you can take. First you need to see if it is on your device.

Lucky for you it’s fairly simple to find out if your device has the tracking service running on it. All it takes is a quick download of Eckhart’s free Logging Test app (currently in its 7th revision). Once installed, hit ‘CIQ Checks,’ and you’ll know almost immediately whether or not your device is affected. If you find you have it you have a few options to remove it.

1) You can uninstall it with the logging app/ This is straightforward: once you’ve installed the app, pay the $1 for the Pro key upgrade in the Android Market. Once you’ve done that, the option to remove Carrier IQ will be unlocked. However ExtremeTech notes that the process may not always be successful.

2) Flash the ROM. This is a more extreme a solution and requires some bravery, but it has its benefits: since many custom ROMs are based of the of the open-source Android code provided by Google.. On top of that, a good custom ROM can also help give your aging hardware a shot in the arm thanks to software tweaks and features it may not get otherwise. You have to Root the device and this can be daunting for some users.

3) Live with it. This may be an option for some. If you can live with big brother watching the so be it. Let him watch.

Bottom line as with any device there may or may not be tracking software you know about on it..so as they used to say in the old police TV shoes…be careful out there!