LG looking into claim smart TVs grab user data

Nov 21, 2013, 4:16 AM EST
People wear 3D glasses as they look at a video wall at the booth of South Korean electronics giant LG at the 53rd IFA (Internationale Funkausstellung) electronics trade fair in Berlin on September 6, 2013.
AFP/Getty Images

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — LG Electronics Inc. said it is investigating a claim that some of its smart TVs send information on home viewing habits back to the company without consent.

The investigation comes after a British blogger, using network traffic analysis software, detailed how his LG smart TV logged the channels he was watching even after an information collection feature was disabled.

The blog said the TV also collected the names of files saved in an external USB hard drive plugged into the TV as well as the TV's unique identification information.

The information also appeared to be sent to LG unencrypted.

The world's second-largest TV maker said Thursday that customer privacy is its top priority and takes the issue very seriously.

An ad platform in LG smart TVs called LG Smart AD lets advertisers reach target audiences by utilizing device information, regional information and demographic details such as age and gender, LG says on its website.

However it was not immediately clear which features in LG's smart TVs were triggering the data monitoring.

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