Samsung cleared of keylogging

Hardware maker Samsung has been cleared of installing secret keylogging software under the bonnet of some of its laptops.

The insecurity firm NetSec Consulting whose antivirus software was used to detect what it thought was spyware has published a statement on its blog saying sorry.

Network World, which broke the story, said Samsung had been given a week to comment but had not responded so it was hardly its fault that the yarn was wrong.

Samsung Australia said its findings showed that a security program called VIPRE that mistook a folder created by Microsoft Live Application for … key logging software, during a virus scan.

When setting up the laptop (model R525), Mohamed Hassan, decided to run a security program on it and run a full system scan before installing any of his own software, the report said. He thought he detected a secret program called “StarLogger” installed.

Hassan came to the conclusion that the spyware must have been installed by Samsung, and so he removed it and carried on using it normally.

He replaced it with another model which had better features, the model R540, and he did the same security software scan on that laptop, the report said Mr Hassan again found the same secret software installed.

Part of the problem was that Samsung acted a little shifty about the whole thing and changed its story a couple of times.

Then a supervisor told him that Samsung put the software on their laptops to “monitor the performance of the machine and to find out how it is being used”.

Network World said it contacted three public relations officers at Samsung for comment and gave them a week to send back their comments. “No one from the company replied,” it said.

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