Xiaomi, Oppo, and OnePlus have been accused of intentionally installing spyware on their smartphones


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Xiaomi, Oppo, and OnePlus will systematically transfer the data of Chinese users of their smartphones to different entities.

A study of “data transmitted by system apps pre-installed on Android smartphones from three of China’s most popular manufacturers” reveals the liberties OnePlus, Oppo, and Xiaomi are taking with user information in the Middle Kingdom. As a preamble, the researchers remind us that China is the country with the most Android devices in the world.

The document is titled “Android Privacy Under the Lens – A Story from the East”. He tells us that after studying the data transmitted by the various systems pre-installed in Xiaomi, Oppo, and OnePlus branded smartphones distributed in China, they managed to conclude that the devices in question are full of real special data sieves. Even worse, many of the core programs included are spyware, for example, Xiaomi’s MIUI 14 overlay, which enjoys extended privileges and systematically transmits their users’ data to national operators’ servers.

Chinese smartphone manufacturers send sensitive user data to telephone operators
Sensitive information regarding users’ devices, their identifiers, their geolocation coordinates, their phone numbers, the apps they use, and their call logs, all goes out there, unbeknownst to citizens. When you know the close ties between the private sector and the Chinese state, you dare to imagine the purposes for which these mountains of data will be used.

In recent years, thanks to the unbeatable price/quality ratio, smartphones from these manufacturers have won over European customers. Do devices sold in the Old Continent also transmit data to China? Impossible to comment on this point. We can be sure that European legislation, especially the General Data Protection Regulation, is the most restrictive. We can also recall that as early as 2021, a US counterintelligence official estimated that China had collected the personal data of 80% of Americans.


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