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Over 700 Million Android Phones Sending Information to China

Nov 16, 2016

Kryptowire, a security firm, just found a backdoor on over 700 million smartphones, which sends your private information to China. Private information that is being sent to China every 72 hours includes text messages, app data, call logs and contact lists.

Android Backdoored Firmware Software Affects US Customers

The real problem is that this backdoored hidden firmware software is impacting those that are on “cheap” or budget Android phones. These phones are sold within the United States and all throughout the world. The worst part about this security concern is that the personal information is being sent over to China every 72 hours secretly. The software is developed by Shanghai AdUps Technology, which is a China-based company. All of your private information, such as the call logs, texts and other private information is going to the AdUps servers. This company does software updates for over 700 million devices, including millions in the United States. The software also can install and update various applications on the smartphone remotely, which means you will never know it is going on.

The United States authorities say that this is intentional and definitely not an accident. The issue is now whether or not this is for advertising reasons or for something more nefarious, such as government surveillance. Since the information is being sent to a China-based server, it does make you wonder whether or not there could be something sinister behind the move.


The backdoor firmware was found on BLU R1 HD devices, which are from the smartphone company BLU Products. This company is from Florida but also sells online at places like Amazon, and ships products worldwide. BLU Products did confirm that AdUps was running on a lot of the smartphones, denied any nefarious activities, and said that the firmware was being deleted from the devices. Kryptowire also notified Google, AdUps, and Amazon of what it found when running the security checks on these Android devices.

AdUps later claimed that information being sent to the AdUps server should not have happened on the phones that were sold within the United States. AdUps said that this software was only designed to help monitor user behavior on those phones sold in China, and it was supposed to be just for the China smartphone manufacturers. Right now it is unclear how many people’s chats, messages, call logs and other information were recorded unauthorized through this third-party app on BLU Products.