By Adam Clark Estes | The Atlantic Wire – Wed, Nov 30, 2011 An Android developer recently discovered a clandestine application called Carrier IQ built into most smartphones that doesn't just track your location; it secretly records your keystrokes, and there's nothing you can do about it. Is it time to put on a tinfoil hat? That depends on how you feel about privacy. The reason for this invasive Android app seems reasonable enough at face value. Even though it's on most Android, BlackBerry and Nokia devices, most users would never know that Carrier IQ is running in the background, and that's sort of the point. Described on the company's website as software to gain "unprecedented insight into their customers' mobile experience," Carrier IQ is ostensibly supposed to help mobile carriers and device manufacturers gather data in order to improve their products. Eckhart first raised a red flag about Carrier IQ about two weeks ago when he started investigating reports that a software update on the HTC EVO 3D included "user behavior logging" code. The code had worried some geek bloggers when it showed up a couple months ago, but HTC and Sprint insisted that it wasn't much different than normal error-logging software and certainly didn't gather granular data like "contents of messages, photos, videos, etc." Eckhart wrote an exhaustive blog post about his startling findings -- CarrierIQ collected lots data, including keystrokes, and there way for the user to opt out "without advanced knowledge" -- and CarrierIQ flipped out. The company sent Eckhart a cease-and-desist letter demanding that he keep his mouth shut and threatening legal action. But after the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) took a look at the case and determined that Eckhart was working within his First Amendment rights, it backed off but still denied that they recorded keystrokes.