Original Reports - Disocvery The two part report from Hassan and Kabay separates the story into the discovery of the keylogging software, and then Samsung's response and alleged admission to it being there. Some problems with the claims were immediately noticeable. Firstly, on the discovery article, Hassan claims to have been alerted to the presence of the threat on a new Samsung R by a "commercial security software" he installed on the system.
Hassan never names the security product that fingered the threat, which is bizarre by itself in such a report, and taking into account the gravity of the accusation against Samsung. Nevertheless, the security product did flag the C:WindowsSL directory as the "StarLogger" keylogger, a commercial tool used for spying on activities.
This was also the case for a second Samsung laptop, R , that he got weeks later after experiencing problems with the video display driver in the R Hassan interpreted the presence of the same alleged threat on two Samsung laptops, discovered by the same security software, as supporting his own position that the manufacturer had placed it there. He ruled out a false positive since he had been using the tool that discovered it for six years and never experienced one. This turned out to be a disastrous assumption on his part.
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After contacting Hassan, Samsung did its own tests and quickly confirmed that there is no keylogger on either laptop. Unfortunately, the same directory is also known to be used with StarLogger. I want to emphasize 'rarely', as these types of detections are seldom used, and when they are, they are subject to an extensive peer review and QA process," Eckelberry wrote. This one admittedly, an incredibly embarrassing one made it through our processes, and I have met with the senior managers in the area this morning to handle what happened and to continue to improve our processes.
According to a NetworkWorld. The oral confirmation refers to an alleged admission that Samsung does install the software on its laptops to, "monitor the performance of the machine and to find out how it is being used. He confirmed that yes, Samsung did knowingly put this software on the laptop," Hassan wrote. This alleged confession is also very bizarre and it would be interesting to hear something from Samsung about this claim. Still, we're not entirely sure that the word of a tech support supervisor should have been used as actual evidence of guilt.
So what has happened since? According to updates posted on NetworkWorld. These units were immediately put under seal and details recorded for chain-of-custody records. We expect results by Monday. However, there are still some questions that need to be answered. I had pointed out in my original article about this that it was taking a very long time for NetworkWorld.
They did eventually remove the graphic and post an item stating that Samsung has been "cleared" of the accusation. Later articles include one about GFI's apology and explanation of the false positive , and the latest on the site now is titled, " Bad assumptions lead to false claim about Samsung laptops. The point that should be made is GFI really doesn't have to apologize to either.
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Perhaps it owes Hassan an apology as a customer of his products for the mistake, but it does not owe an apology to Samsung perhaps it does to Microsoft for flagging a folder used with Windows Live software, but a public apology even for that would be a bit much.
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