Other examples of proprietary malware
This page lists clearly established cases of insecurity in
proprietary software that has grave consequences or is otherwise
It would be incorrect to compare proprietary software with a
fictitious idea of free software as perfect. Every nontrivial program
has bugs, and any system, free or proprietary, may have security
holes. But proprietary software developers frequently disregard
gaping holes, or even introduce them deliberately, and the users
are helpless to fix them.
The NSA can tap data in smart phones, including iPhones, Android, and
BlackBerry. While there is not much detail here, it seems that
this does not operate via the universal back door that we know nearly
all portable phones have. It may involve exploiting various bugs.
lots of bugs in the phones' radio software.
“Smart homes” turn out to be stupidly vulnerable to
insecurity of WhatsApp
makes eavesdropping a snap.
The FTC punished a company for making webcams with bad security so
that it was easy for anyone to watch them.
It is possible to take control of some car computers through malware
in music files.
radio. Here is more
It is possible to kill people by taking control of medical implants by
information. And here.
Lots of hospital equipment has lousy security, and it can be fatal.
Point-of-sale terminals running Windows were taken over and turned
into a botnet for the purpose of collecting customers' credit card
An app to prevent “identity theft” (access to personal data)
by storing users' data on a special server
deactivated by its developer which had discovered a security flaw.
That developer seems to be conscientious about protecting personal
data from third parties in general, but it can't protect that data
from the state. Quite the contrary: confiding your data to someone
else's server, if not first encrypted by you with free software,
undermines your rights.
memories have modifiable software, which makes them vulnerable to
We don't call this a “back door” because it is normal
that you can install a new system in a computer given physical access
to it. However, memory sticks and cards should not be modifiable in
nonfree software in disk drives can be written by a nonfree
program. This makes any system vulnerable to persistent attacks
that normal forensics won't detect.