Published: Thu, October 12, 2017
Global | By Shelia Dennis

OnePlus getting hold of personal information

OnePlus getting hold of personal information

Now, this is weird as how can company record all user operation data to help in providing after-sales service to users, unless they go through all the data if the user visits the OnePlus service centre. There's no good reason for the company to obtain this much data, no matter what OnePlus will tell us.

It gets worse though, as delving further into what else is being gathered by the company has access to the phones IMEI (s), phone numbers, MAC addresses, mobile network (s) names and IMSI prefixes, as well as wireless network ESSIDs and BSSIDs. Moore noticed that a large amount of data is being sent to the server through the secure HTTPS protocol.

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Incidentally, Moore has already found a way to kill the OnePlus Device Manager, the offending app that sends out the data, via a reply from one of his Twitter followers. OnePlus seems to have been caught because it has not been using users' permission. His phone also transmitted timestamp ranges, letting OnePlus known when he opened and closed applications on his phone, which again was stamped with his device's serial number. The company, responding to the engineer's allegations, says that the data is collected for analytics and aftersales support.

OnePlus openly admitted that it is collecting the data, but said the data is being collected to enhance its software. He chose to run the program for a bit longer and found out that the phone was sending sensitive personal information such as IMEI number, phone numbers, MAC addresses, mobile networks information and the serial number. Notably, Moore before putting out all the information did contact OnePlus Support team back in January with the concern on which OnePlus was unable to give a permanent fix. "What's also worrying is that the company didn't even address the implication on users" privacy. While this is certainly a bit upsetting, it looks like the "feature" can be disabled even though it is a component of the OnePlus Device Manager without requiring root. The first stream is usage analytics, which we collect in order for us to more precisely fine-tune our software according to user behaviour. Since those two services are natively part of OnePlus' OxygenOS operating system, meddling with it could have consequences.

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The second stream, the OnePlus rep added, was just device information, which was not shared with outside parties.

Twitter user Jakub Czekański has explained that this data collection can be blocked by putting your phone into debugging mode and entering the command pm uninstall -k -user 0 pkg.

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