Threat Management, Application security

SpyFone banned from surveillance industry by FTC

The Hill reports that SpyFone, a "stalkerware" app, and Scott Zuckerman, the company's CEO, will not be allowed by the Federal Trade Commission to operate in the surveillance industry.

The company was found to have enabled stalking by allegedly collecting and sharing data. The company was also ordered to delete data it collected from SpyFone app users, such as information on online activities and their location.

"SpyFone is a brazen brand name for a surveillance business that helped stalkers steal private information. The stalkerware was hidden from device owners, but was fully exposed to hackers who exploited the company's slipshod security," according to a statement released by Samuel Levine, the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection's acting director.

"This case is an important reminder that surveillance-based businesses pose a significant threat to our safety and security. We will be aggressive about seeking surveillance bans when companies and their executives egregiously invade our privacy," Levine added.

Android device users may use the SpyFone app, which is not available in the Google Play store, to remotely monitor the activities of employees or children from an online dashboard, the complaint stated.

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