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Report: Sprint disabling Carrier IQ on its devices

Sprint, which confirmed to Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) earlier this week that it has installed the network diagnostic tool Carrier IQ on 26 million of its handsets, is disabling the software.

In a statement to MobileBurn, a Sprint spokesperson said that the carrier will no longer collect information from Carrier IQ on its handsets.

“We have weighed customer concerns and we have disabled use of the tool so that diagnostic information and data is no longer being collected,” Sprint told the Web site, adding that it will look at other options for collecting necessary handset diagnostics.

Sprint did not immediately return a request for confirmation of the report.

On Thursday, AT&T, Sprint, HTC and Samsung answered requests for more information from Franken on how they use the software.

AT&T said that it has the software installed on 900,000 devices and collects information from 575,000. HTC and Samsung said they were not sure how many of their phones carried active versions of the software, as the program is a tool for carrier metrics.

“I appreciate the responses I received, but I’m still very troubled by what’s going on,” Franken said in a statement. “It appears that Carrier IQ has been receiving the contents of a number of text messages-even though they had told the public that they did not. I’m also bothered by the software’s ability to capture the contents of our online searches-even when users wish to encrypt them. So there are still many questions to be answered here and things that need to be fixed.”

Franken has also requested that information from T-Mobile and Motorola be given to him by Tuesday.

In a report earlier this week, Carrier IQ said that its software is not intended to log keypresses or the content of messages, though bugs installed with the program on certain handsets seem to have collected some of this information by accident. On Wednesday, government officials confirmed to The Washington Post that the Carrier IQ is under investigation by the Federal Trade Commission.

Related stories:

Carrier IQ: Which wireless carrier is the biggest user?

Carrier IQ faces federal probe into allegations software tracks cellphone data

FBI director says bureau hasn’t sought Carrier IQ data

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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