SOFTWARE INCLUDED ON LENOVO hardware has been found to be suspicious-looking, and this is not the first time that the company has been caught out like this.
You might assume that the firm learned a lesson from the Superfish scandal and the stink that that created. Apparently not. A report on ComputerWorld sees a fresh laptop taken apart and found to be a potentially damaging to your personals.
Michael Horowitz reports on his own discovery on the website saying that it was while looking at the tasks that his own hardware was running that he smelled a cyber rat in his technology kitchen.
"The task that gave me pause is called Lenovo Customer Feedback Program 64. It was running daily. According to the description in the task scheduler: This task uploads Customer Feedback Program data to Lenovo," he said.
"I have set up my fair share of new Lenovo machines and can't recall ever being asked about a Customer Feedback program."
The feature, which includes the suggestion of links to marketing outfit Omniture and the threat of real invasion, is explained away in online information, and some of that information comes from Lenovo and was released after Superfish was served up with chips in some newspaper.
Lenovo has suggested that there is nothing special to see here and that while it appears that users are being pulled for information, and that that information is going somewhere, this is all actually quite normal stuff and nothing for any of us to worry about.
The firm has quickly explained this away and distanced itself from the reports. It said that the issue has something to do with preparation for Windows 10. As we have gradually come to understand, preparing for Windows 10 is a huge challenge with a number of spongy elements and grey areas.
Lenovo is confident, though, and it said that what has been found is a good thing, and that if people don't like it they can easily remove themselves from the experience.
"Statistical data collection by Lenovo has been the subject of press reports and social media discussion. Similar to other companies in the PC, smartphone and tablet industries and as disclosed in the End User Licence Agreement, Lenovo products collect non-personally identifiable statistical usage data that is not tracked to any single customer or device. This data helps Lenovo improve both existing and future products," it said in a statement.
"In preparation for Windows 10, all programs preloaded on Lenovo PCs were reviewed by Lenovo and independent third parties from privacy and technical perspectives and are listed in the ‘programs directory' in Windows, under ‘settings'. Customers who do not want to participate, can remove the program by going into the ‘Control Panel', opening ‘Add / Remove Programs', clicking on the program and selecting ‘uninstall'."
And we imagine that some are probably doing that right now. µ
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