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Amazon Stops Selling BLU Smartphones [HERE'S WHY]


Back in November, security researchers discovered spyware on BLU smartphones, which was then confirmed by the company who promised to fix the issue. Despite those promises, BLU's smartphones are still shipping with the date collecting features.

At least three models confirmed to be shipping with the spyware and although BLU said these claims are "inaccurate and false reports," and the full press release is below. However, Amazon has decided to stop selling BLU smartphones until the issue is resolved.
MIAMI, July 31, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- BLU Products responds to inaccuracies reported by several news outlets making clear that there is absolutely no spyware or malware or secret software on BLU devices, these are inaccurate and false reports. BLU is reaching out to several reporters to correct their articles and issue apologies, which BLU has started receiving.

The original report by Kryptowire issued on November 2016 regarding the Adups OTA application, stated a small fraction of BLU phones had a version of the application which was collecting phonebook contacts and text messages. Since BLU was unaware of this collection, they hadn't notified customers, thus it was deemed as a potential privacy issue. BLU moved quickly and resolved the problem by having Adups turn off this functionality.

Furthermore, BLU decided to switch the Adups OTA application on future devices with Google's GOTA. Even though it is BLU's policy to only use GOTA moving forward, some older devices still use ADUPS OTA.

Using ADUPS OTA is not an issue here. ADUPS is a well-known application used by several device manufacturers around the world. The issue is exactly what kind of data is actually being collected by this ADUPS application, and whether it presents a security or privacy risk.

BLU hired Kryptowire in November of 2016 since their first report to regularly monitor the ADUPS application in theirdevices, and they have since been doing that. The data that is currently being collected is standard for OTA functionallyand basic informational reporting. This is in line with every other smartphone device manufacturer in the world. There is nothing out of the ordinary that is being collected, and certainly does not affect any user's privacy or security. In addition, as per Tom Karygiannis, VP of Kryptowire, the data collection is in line with BLU's Privacy Policy, and does not constitute any wrong doing by BLU.

Regarding that some information may be stored in China servers, their privacy policy clearly states that some of the data collected can be stored in servers outside the US, there is absolutely nothing wrong with having a server in China. BLU management takes issue with the statement that any server in China is prone to risk while several other multibillion dollar companies and other mobile manufactures such as Huawei and ZTE use them.

BLU has several policies in place which takes customer privacy and security very seriously, and confirms that there has been no breach or issue of any kind with any of its devices.

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