Beau Kujath is an Information Controls fellow working with the Citizen Lab and SocialTIC, a PhD candidate at Arizona State University, and member of BreakpointingBad.
Many service providers or telcos in Central America require “bloatware” applications to be installed on end-user devices for the network to be accessed. With the help of information security leaders in the region, a short list of high-impact applications have been identified that will be examined for security threats and potential privacy issues for the average user that is required to have one on their device. Bloatware applications are serious threats to the security of a device because they tend to have elevated permissions and typically cannot be removed by the user without gaining root access. During the fellowship, Beau will formulate a set of threat classes that are most serious in bloatware applications, produce an organized list of steps that a user in the information security field would be able to follow to investigate any similar bloatware app, and translate the findings for the target region.