OnePlus Says User Data Wasn't Shared, Will Add 'Opt-In' Usage Analytics Feature

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OnePlus Says User Data Wasn't Shared, Will Add 'Opt-In' Usage Analytics Feature
Highlights
  • OnePlus co-founder addresses privacy complaints
  • The company to include new "opt-in" option for users
  • Pei said that the user data wasn't being shared with third-party

OnePlus recently faced public backlash after a researcher discovered that the company's devices were collecting unanonymised user data without user consent. Chinese handset maker responded in no time claiming that it was collecting data to improve its service, and that it was standard practice in OEMs. The company, however, has now taken some prompt decisions which include a new "opt-in" option for the user experience program.

OnePlus Co-Founder Carl Pei in a forum post has addressed issues, and vow to stop collecting information like telephone numbers, MAC addresses and Wi-Fi information. "We'd like to emphasise that at no point have we shared this information with outside parties. The analytics we're discussing in this post, which we only look at in aggregate, are collected with the intention of improving our product and service offerings," Pei added.

He stressed that users can at any point opt out of usage analytics collection by navigating to Settings > Advanced > Join user experience program. Pei further confirmed that OnePlus devices by end of October will have the prompt in the setup wizard which will ask whether they want to join the company's user experience program. Pei said that the setup wizard will clearly indicate that the program collects usage analytics.

"In addition, we will include a terms of service agreement that further explains our analytics collection," he added.

The privacy issue on OnePlus devices was first reported back in January though an in-depth report surfaced last week. Security researcher and developer Christopher Moore discovered that OnePlus was collecting unanonymised analytics data from its users including specific user patterns to a company server without prior user permission. The details allegedly being collected included the phone number, IMEI number, mobile serial number, MAC address, mobile network names, and battery status more.

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