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How Nokia 7 Plus data leak affects users
« on: March 25, 2019, 07:01:48 AM »

If you've bought a Nokia smartphone, or plan to buy one, you might want to know a couple of things about privacy and security. In case you're not yet aware, HMD Global, the company behind that Nokia-branded smartphone, is currently being investigated by Finland's data protection watchdog after proof has found that some Nokia phones sent unencrypted user information to China.

A specific model was pointed out by Norway's public broadcaster NRK – Nokia 7 Plus, and only on a single batch of units. Our previous report mentions that these phones were supposed to be sold in China initially, but ended up in the hands of European consumers. That's a very important aspect in HMD Global's defense, but here is what the company told us after the unfortunate incident:

We can confirm that no personally identifiable information has been shared with any third party. We have analyzed the case at hand and have found that our device activation client meant for another country was mistakenly included in the software package of a single batch of Nokia 7 Plus. Due to this mistake, these devices were erroneously trying to send device activation data to a third party server. However, such data was never processed and no person could have been identified based on this data. This error has already been identified and fixed in February 2019 by switching the client to the right country variant. All affected devices have received this fix and nearly all devices have already installed it. Collecting one-time device activation data when the phone is taken first time into use is an industry practice and allows manufacturers to activate phone warranty. HMD Global takes the security and privacy of its consumers seriously.

In a long post published yesterday, HMD Global is trying to “demystify” data collection and explain why its Nokia 7 Plus units sent unencrypted information to China and how users of these phones are affected by this.



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