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Posted by Rob Brosnan on November 30, 2011
Carrier IQ software, which consists of embedded software on mobile devices and server-side analytics applications, enables mobile operators and device OEMs to understand in detail a wide range of performance and usage characteristics of mobile services and devices. These include both network-facing services such as core voice and data offerings, as well as non-network-facing capabilities such as music players, cameras and other side loaded media, in order to assist with product and service development and roll-out [emphasis added].
Customer Intelligence is not a spying operation. The promise of CI is not reductively commercial. Instead, proper CI practices help businesses – with their customers' consent – to understand the preferences and needs of their customers. Firms also use CI processes and technologies to determine and enforce an optimal and respectful relationship with customers.
What lessons does the Carrier IQ incident highlight?
Ethics is a rare topic of discussion within CI circles. Yet if CI pros don't take a stand, the result will be a tragedy of the commons, through either customer backlash or legislation. If you haven't already, I encourage you to read Fatemeh Khatibloo's excellent Personal Identity Management for an in-depth look at how CI pros can improve the future of customer data.
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