How would you feel if your smartphone was spying on you?
Millions of people around the world got a taste of that earlier this week.
The cause for this ongoing privacy scare: an analytics company called Carrier IQ.
According to Gizmodo, the software isn't part of any operating system, such as Android or iOS. Instead, it is reportedly installed independently by a phone carrier or manufacturer.
What's worse? There is no way to opt-out.
So who is actually using the software?
Among major phone carriers, Spring, AT&T and T-Mobile all confirmed limited usage, citing network monitoring and maintenance as their main reasons. Verizon denied using Carrier IQ, along with handset makers Research In Motion and Nokia. Samsung and HTC said their phones do not include the software unless U.S. carriers request it. Unfortunately, both companies still could not escape being sued for violating the Federal Wiretap Act.
As for Apple, the company issued a statement saying "we stopped supporting Carrier IQ with iOS 5 in most of the products and will remove it completely in a future software update.”
Click here to see how to check whether your handset has Carrier IQ.