Chinese TV Maker Skyworth Issues Apology After Getting Caught With Excessive Data Collection
Chinese TV maker Skyworth recently landed themselves in hot water after a user uncovered that his TV was busy collecting data and sending it to Gozen Data, an analytics company based in Beijing. The user claims that this data collection was being done without his consent.
Skyworth TV caught spying
According to the user, who has yet to identify himself, a Skyworth Smart TV had scanned for devices that were connected to the same local network in 10-minute intervals. After that, the TV gathered the data it had collected which included names of the devices, IP addresses, network latency and even other Wi-Fi networks within the area including the user’s neighbour’s Wi-Fi. The data was then sent to Beijing-based Gozen Data, a company that specialises in targeted advertisements on Smart TVs.
The revelation quickly drew the ire of users in China and caused Skyworth to quickly issue a statement stating that it had severed its ties with Gozen. The statement also sees Skyworth demand that the analytics company delete all the “illegally” collected data as well. The TV company also stated that they would be stopping the use of the Gozen app on its products and will be further looking into the matter.
Skyworth mentioned that the data they collected with Giozen is necessary for the company to gauge viewership, however, they also mentioned that the excessive data that Gozen collected was unauthorised and was not sanctioned by the TV maker.
Skyworth was questioned further by the South China Morning Post, who had first broken this story, and in a statement, the Shenzen-based TV maker said that the TVs sold in Hong Kong did not come with the Gozen app pre-installed. They also went on to state, “Data security and user privacy are our highest priorities … we will continue to safeguard our users’ privacy, data, rights and interests.”
This case of data collection is in violation of China’s latest user-privacy regulations, which are being implemented in stages this year. According to South China Morning Post, the new regulations allow users to decline data collection in which the user deems unnecessary for the app to run properly.
Pokdepinion: This sort of thing absolutely boils my blood. How can we trust companies like these when they continue this sort of shady data collection behind our backs? Makes you want to just throw everything out sometimes and live like a nomad.