INTRO: According to the Following recent allegations of surreptitious data mining through its Mi Browser Pro and Mint Browser apps, Xiaomi has started rolling out updates to both, offering users an option to turn off data collection when in incognito mode.
Mint Browser And Mi Browser coming with a Software Update
According to a post on the official Mi blog, the company said in it: “ We have been always fulfilling our goal of providing the world-class security services and products to all the users. So, our next Mint Browser and Mi Browser will be coming with a software update which will include an option in incognito mode for all users of both the browsers to switch on/off from the aggregated data collection, in an effort to furthermore strengthen the control we grant the users over sharing their own data with Xiaomi”.
Earlier Reports of Data Leakage from Mi devices was Reported
The move comes just days after a Forbes report claimed that the browsers were sending data to remote servers without expressed consent from users. The research, which was undertaken by cybersecurity researchers Gabriel Cirlig and Andrew Tierney in association with Forbes’ cybersecurity analyst, Thomas Brewster, started when Cirlig noticed that his Redmi Note 8 was sending an inordinate amount of data to remote servers operated by the Chinese tech giant, Alibaba.
According to the researchers who conducted the research, said that the transmitted data included the users’ complete web-history, including URLs, search engine queries and all of the items which were viewed on Xiaomi’s news feed, along with device metadata, even with ‘incognito mode’ enabled on by the browsers. While the information was being encrypted before being transferred, it was also encoded in base64, which can be easily decoded and traced back to the user which could be a massive threat to user privacy.
The Xiaomi’s decision to acknowledge the problem and issue an update is in direct contrast to its earlier stance when it had refuted all allegations, with the company’s Global VP, Manu Kumar Jain, saying that “all Mi internet products are 100% safe”.
The Chinese smartphone maker company also released a statement, in which the company said: “Our user’s privacy and internet security are our one of the top priorities at Xiaomi; we are pretty confident that we strictly following it and are fully compliant with the local laws and regulations. We have reached out to Forbes to offer us clarity on this unfortunate misinterpretation by them”.