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“Yandex.Navigator” was accused of spying on users

“Yandex.Navigator”, as it turns out, was able to not only build routes on mobile devices, but also to record on the built-in microphone. In “Yandex” has already stated that this is a programming error.

About the mysterious behavior of the Navigator said user Facebook Evgeniy Strokin. On his smartphone, he found an audio file “stream.wav” containing a record from the microphone more than a day. The recording stopped when the gadget is over the memory – and it attracted his attention. It turned out that the record led the application “Yandex.Navigator”.

The case sparked heated debate in the IT community. In “Yandex” has hastened to assure that it is a software failure.

“We’ve rolled out a version of Yandex.Navigator for Android with an unpleasant bug: the app constantly kept an open MIC and was recording all the audio to a local file. As a result of rapidly congesting the space available on the device, and it just looked suspicious, although the contents of the file over the network anywhere and never passed,” said the company.

The problem came on Monday after the update, and then was fixed with the next update. Now any data the app does not record or store, and the “extra” files to be deleted from the memory, according to “Yandex”.

The error appeared when preparing a new version of the app, which allowed voice activation “Yandex.Navigator” on command “Yandex”. Previously, in order to give the application a command (for example, to plot a route or search for an address) voice, it was necessary to press the special button.

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For the final testing before the release of the company’s employees accidentally picked up a debug version of the application. It was possible to record all sounds on your memory card to when testing can be understood, when the voice recognition system worked correctly. The function had to be disabled in the final version of the application.

“A small change in the size of the application during testing we didn’t notice because each time you call the application from the background file was rewritten, which did not allow the sample to grow to substantial values,” said the company.

During the movement, when the session of the “Navigator” does not stop long enough time, samples could grow to several gigabytes. And users have noticed that after a few hours after launch. By this point it became clear that production fell erroneous code, which was planned to be used exclusively for internal testing.

Employees of Yandex noted that the lack of testing has led to a serious issue, “in which some people, alas, have lost confidence in the “Navigator” and even in General to Yandex”. The company apologized to all who have been affected by the problem.

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