Keyloggers. They are one of those things that you simply cannot rationalize using for a noble cause, as far as I am concerned*. Many people share that sentiment so when word began to spread that Samsung may have gotten busted installing keylogging software on their laptop computers, well, you can only imagine the uproar.
It all started when Mohamed Hassan, a computer security expert and all around good guy, ran a virus scan on his shiny new R525 laptop computer. The virus scan claimed to have found a keylogging program called StarLogger, which is said to record every keystroke on your computer regardless of whether or not you’re in a secure window. Understandably displeased with this, Hassan ordered another Samsung laptop, this time a R540. After running another virus scan, he discovered the same problem.
That led to him saying this:
The fact that on both models the same files were found in the same location supported the suspicion that the hardware manufacturer, Samsung, must know about this software on its brand-new laptops.
Here’s where things get interesting. According to reports, a Samsung supervisor admitted that the keylogger software was on the computer and suggested that you should look within your “C:\Windows\SL” folder to find it if you want it removed. And yet the official Samsung response is markedly different:
Our findings indicate that the person mentioned in the article used a security program called VIPRE that mistook a folder created by Microsoft Live Application for a key logging software, during a virus scan.
Uh… what? So it is a keylogger, but it isn’t a keylogger? Hrm. No matter the case, this is one story that doesn’t seem to be going away for a little while. Nor should it — if people are having their computer usage monitored, they should know about it.