Data of 31 million users of iPhone add-on keyboard ai.type potentially leaks

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 40
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,240member
    slurpy said:
    Aren't 3rd party keyboard ones of the "best" parts of Androids? They were definitely at the top of "why iPhones suck" bullet point lists for years. 
    LOL I forgot about that talking point.
    anton zuykovcornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 22 of 40
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,061member
    Soli said:
    slurpy said:
    Aren't 3rd party keyboard ones of the "best" parts of Androids? They were definitely at the top of "why iPhones suck" bullet point lists for years. 
    LOL I forgot about that talking point.
    Quite true. We used to be able to leave our doors unlocked in small town America too. As time has gone any convenience and trust has been pummeled by evil and criminal action. So what used to be a nice option of "choice" for consumers has been stolen away by a select few who either don't care for what we've entrusted them with or worse are looking for more creative ways to steal from us whatever we've managed to have. Apple may be right: No one can be trusted, everyone is out for themselves. 
  • Reply 23 of 40
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,520member
    gatorguy said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    gatorguy said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    gatorguy said:
    If I read the article correctly, the mention of "31 million iPhone users" is misleading.  I expect that vast majority of those users are, in fact, Android owners.  I doubt there are 31 million iPhone numbers who have tried any alternative keyboards to date.

    I do like the (well deserved) dig at Kromtech in the last line, however.
    On the Play Store the free version shows 5M (but could be up to less than 10M) downloads and the premium ad-free one show 100K. 
    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.aitype.android.emojinew&hl=en
    I thought Android had more than one App Store.

    No idea where they make their app available outside of the official app stores if they do. Have you seen it somewhere else too? 
    Well, since there seem to be at least ten app stores, wasn’t sure where to begin, so dived in at random and found one here. 


    https://a-i-type-keyboard-free.en.uptodown.com/android

    Might be the only one, but since this outfit seems to have been harvesting user info for some reason, my guess is that they’ll be aiming for as wide a distribution as possible. 

    Thanks, so there's at least one other place. I would think the official stores would be far busier than 3rd party ones, but I've not ever looked outside official sources. Anyway the bulk of the installs would likely be from Google Play and the App Store don't you think, not that it matters. It appears AI.type was an equal opportunity offender, and certainly not the only app developer who doesn't disclose everything about their app despite the platform, and especially if there's a DarkSider, Cydia or dodgy free-Androidware store involved. We should all stick to official outlets. They may not be 100% safe and secure but there's rarely if ever any reason to look outside them and hammer that risk factor.
    Agreed, the more walled the garden is the better.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 24 of 40
    I have never used any 3rd party keyboard (apart from, very rarely gif keyboard) and never find anyone on iOS that using it. For sure the majority of this “30 millions user” if true would have come from Android. For one, it’s a mess. You can find anything and load anything onto your phone, being in Google Play Store or not just doesn’t matter. It’s a mess. 
    edited December 2017 watto_cobra
  • Reply 25 of 40
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,102member
    gatorguy said:
    adm1 said:
    are people really surprised? android was developed by google, the same people that view us all as data generators to be harvested and sold to the highest bidder. It's probably a key selling point to developers and manufacturers alike; "get data on all your users, see who uses your device/app, how and when, what they like/dislike, activate the camera to watch them secretly and get a copy of everything they type on the keyboard to steal credit card info and passwords! help make your app/device better!"

    I highly doubt the same information was available from any iOS version.
    Don't be so doubtful. Did the app offer this popup when installed? If you continued you gave it your blessing. It would be nigh-impossible for Apple to police this after the fact..
    22

    There's a good read which explains the potential iOS app problems here:
    https://zeltser.com/third-party-keyboards-security/
    Sure, when you install a keyboard it has access to the keys you type. It controls the keyboard you type on, and therefore knows what you type. Has to. No other way. 

    With that alert there is no reason, none at all, why Apple can be held responsible. And google even say that they are sending information to improve the auto correct. In a second alert. 
  • Reply 26 of 40
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,061member
    asdasd said:
    gatorguy said:
    adm1 said:
    are people really surprised? android was developed by google, the same people that view us all as data generators to be harvested and sold to the highest bidder. It's probably a key selling point to developers and manufacturers alike; "get data on all your users, see who uses your device/app, how and when, what they like/dislike, activate the camera to watch them secretly and get a copy of everything they type on the keyboard to steal credit card info and passwords! help make your app/device better!"

    I highly doubt the same information was available from any iOS version.
    Don't be so doubtful. Did the app offer this popup when installed? If you continued you gave it your blessing. It would be nigh-impossible for Apple to police this after the fact..
    22

    There's a good read which explains the potential iOS app problems here:
    https://zeltser.com/third-party-keyboards-security/
    Sure, when you install a keyboard it has access to the keys you type. It controls the keyboard you type on, and therefore knows what you type. Has to. No other way. 

    With that alert there is no reason, none at all, why Apple can be held responsible. And google even say that they are sending information to improve the auto correct. In a second alert. 
    Agreed. Neither Apple's iOS nor Google's Android (who gives the same permission warnings) can be held to blame. Those saying the app store owners are doing something wrong or can prevent app developers from careless handling of user information simply don't know what they're talking about.  It's not a Google or Apple-specific problem. It's primarily a developer problem. 
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 27 of 40
    analogjackanalogjack Posts: 1,043member
    "Krummytech" the name itself is enough.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 28 of 40
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,268member
    If I read the article correctly, the mention of "31 million iPhone users" is misleading.  I expect that vast majority of those users are, in fact, Android owners.  I doubt there are 31 million iPhone numbers who have tried any alternative keyboards to date.

    I do like the (well deserved) dig at Kromtech in the last line, however.

    It's a carefully crafted title in order to trick page views. Shady, if you ask me.

    It's actually "31 million users OF iPhone add-on keyboard". That "OF" keeps it correct, but only the article clarifies that the keyboard is available for Android, too.
  • Reply 29 of 40
    I find it interesting that some iPhone users, despite having to cough up a significant buck to buy the hardware, are willingly forfeiting some of the most important features iOS offers, by installing useless (ok, that may be too far, but I sincerely fail to recognize the relevance of the so called alternative, or 'pro', keyboards) adware. I don't know shit about Android (despite my monthly janitor function on my mother's device) so I won't go there, but it surprises me that such information could be gleaned from an iOS app, even with user consent. Isn't it against Apple policies to even ask for access not relevant to the app function?
    Some (actually probably very few) 3rd party keyboards are actually pretty awesome and offer usability that isn't available on the default keyboards (for example, gesture typing offered by SwiftKey is more accurate and way faster than tap typing, at least for me, and it also has way better suggestions than the default keyboard).  

    But, yes, using a 3rd party keyboard can open you up to things like data mining and tracking.  It's better to use 3rd party keyboards from reputable companies (I considered SwiftKey to be one of them until Microsoft bought them; I quickly uninstalled that app once I found that out because NO THANK YOU!). Believe it or not, Google's GBoard keyboard is actually really nice and useful.  
  • Reply 30 of 40
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 3,232administrator
    If I read the article correctly, the mention of "31 million iPhone users" is misleading.  I expect that vast majority of those users are, in fact, Android owners.  I doubt there are 31 million iPhone numbers who have tried any alternative keyboards to date.

    I do like the (well deserved) dig at Kromtech in the last line, however.

    It's a carefully crafted title in order to trick page views. Shady, if you ask me.

    It's actually "31 million users OF iPhone add-on keyboard". That "OF" keeps it correct, but only the article clarifies that the keyboard is available for Android, too.
    You mean the lede, one whole line below the headline?
  • Reply 31 of 40
    starxdstarxd Posts: 128member
    slurpy said:
    Aren't 3rd party keyboard ones of the "best" parts of Androids? They were definitely at the top of "why iPhones suck" bullet point lists for years. Incredibly (not so incredibly) I haven't seen a SINGLE iPhone user in the wild using one of these 3rd party keyboards, because why would they? Android's appeal has always been shitty hacks and "freedom" to install garbage with massive security implications. Kind of funny how 3rd party KBs used to be the most important feature in the world when they weren't on iOS, then when they were nobody cared anymore. Then people pretend to be shocked every time this happens. 
    Why would they?  Because they offer functionality that Apple's stock keyboard doesn't, that's why.  I mostly use Gboard on my iPhone.  I love gesture typing in one-handed mode.  
  • Reply 32 of 40
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 2,643member
    anhelo said:
    I find it interesting that some iPhone users, despite having to cough up a significant buck to buy the hardware, are willingly forfeiting some of the most important features iOS offers, by installing useless (ok, that may be too far, but I sincerely fail to recognize the relevance of the so called alternative, or 'pro', keyboards) adware. I don't know shit about Android (despite my monthly janitor function on my mother's device) so I won't go there, but it surprises me that such information could be gleaned from an iOS app, even with user consent. Isn't it against Apple policies to even ask for access not relevant to the app function?
    Some (actually probably very few) 3rd party keyboards are actually pretty awesome and offer usability that isn't available on the default keyboards (for example, gesture typing offered by SwiftKey is more accurate and way faster than tap typing, at least for me, and it also has way better suggestions than the default keyboard).  

    But, yes, using a 3rd party keyboard can open you up to things like data mining and tracking.  It's better to use 3rd party keyboards from reputable companies (I considered SwiftKey to be one of them until Microsoft bought them; I quickly uninstalled that app once I found that out because NO THANK YOU!). Believe it or not, Google's GBoard keyboard is actually really nice and useful.  
    I use GBoard but on Android. The design layout works very well for me and it has nice simultaneous multi language support. I prefer it over Huawei input.
  • Reply 33 of 40
    The article seemed to loose all credibility at the last sentence. Isn’t mackeeper an app that tries to install itself from certain websites and convince us our Mac has viruses? I always presumed it was malware itself.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 34 of 40
    starxd said:
    slurpy said:
    Aren't 3rd party keyboard ones of the "best" parts of Androids? They were definitely at the top of "why iPhones suck" bullet point lists for years. Incredibly (not so incredibly) I haven't seen a SINGLE iPhone user in the wild using one of these 3rd party keyboards, because why would they? Android's appeal has always been shitty hacks and "freedom" to install garbage with massive security implications. Kind of funny how 3rd party KBs used to be the most important feature in the world when they weren't on iOS, then when they were nobody cared anymore. Then people pretend to be shocked every time this happens. 
    Why would they?  Because they offer functionality that Apple's stock keyboard doesn't, that's why.  I mostly use Gboard on my iPhone.  I love gesture typing in one-handed mode.  
    Indeed. Apparently Apple did not know how to set up a misconfigured DB with access to the internet. Good thing AI had figured out how to do so. Also, does it not concern you that they keylog/listen to EVERYTHING you type in on your device, while they take no money for using that product? It is a good thing you love those hand-gestures. That company loves them too and it shows you the one with a finger all the time... so, i guess, it is a win-win, then.
  • Reply 35 of 40
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,061member
    starxd said:
    slurpy said:
    Aren't 3rd party keyboard ones of the "best" parts of Androids? They were definitely at the top of "why iPhones suck" bullet point lists for years. Incredibly (not so incredibly) I haven't seen a SINGLE iPhone user in the wild using one of these 3rd party keyboards, because why would they? Android's appeal has always been shitty hacks and "freedom" to install garbage with massive security implications. Kind of funny how 3rd party KBs used to be the most important feature in the world when they weren't on iOS, then when they were nobody cared anymore. Then people pretend to be shocked every time this happens. 
    Why would they?  Because they offer functionality that Apple's stock keyboard doesn't, that's why.  I mostly use Gboard on my iPhone.  I love gesture typing in one-handed mode.  
    Indeed. Apparently Apple did not know how to set up a misconfigured DB with access to the internet. Good thing AI had figured out how to do so. Also, does it not concern you that they keylog/listen to EVERYTHING you type in on your device, while they take no money for using that product? It is a good thing you love those hand-gestures. That company loves them too and it shows you the one with a finger all the time... so, i guess, it is a win-win, then.

    What Gboard sends to Google:

    • When you do a search, Gboard sends your query to Google’s web servers so Google can process your query and send you search results.
    • Gboard also sends anonymous statistics to Google to help diagnose problems when the app crashes and let Google know which features are used most often.

    What Gboard doesn’t send to Google:

    • Everything else. Gboard will remember words you type to help you with spelling or to predict searches you might be interested in, but this data is stored only on your device. This data is not accessible to Google or to any apps other than Gboard.
    avon b7
  • Reply 36 of 40
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,087member
    Only one I ever downloaded was the HERO keyboard but I never use it. More of a pain in the ass sometimes it would work and sometimes it wouldn’t so I just gave up on that whole thing.

  • Reply 37 of 40
    Man, the kids these days don’t know how good Apple’s keyboard is/was. Why, I remember installing Android 1.6 on my first-gen iPhone and the Q and P keys wouldn’t register. It wasn’t even the fault of the hardware (and Apple has consistently had the most accurate touchscreens); Android was just THAT BAD at detection. Now they’re coming out with Swype and custom layouts and button shapes and who knows what else… And all of them STEAL YOUR DATA, BECAUSE THEY’RE KEYLOGGERS BY DEFINITION. Brave New Eighty Four, I tell you what.

    This has been “Reminiscing About The Last Decade As Though It Was 70 Years Ago”
    pscooter63
  • Reply 38 of 40
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,047member
    The article seemed to loose all credibility at the last sentence. Isn’t mackeeper an app that tries to install itself from certain websites and convince us our Mac has viruses? I always presumed it was malware itself.
    Heh. That’s the one.  

    I clucked on the advert once, and instead of taking me to a website, it just downloaded the installer. Deleted it straight away without even running it. That kind of shady carry-on never leads anywhere good. 
  • Reply 39 of 40
    I have a friend who would fall for this.   He seems to believe that as long as he has a 35 character password and changes it regularly that nothing bad can happen...   When confronted with examples like this, he typically responds with an innane "But how could they hurt me?"

    The alternate reality he lives in must be a very pleasant place.
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