updated 02:40 pm EST, Fri February 3, 2012
Motorola Woot auction slips Xooms with user info
Motorola has started up a return program after a minor but still significant privacy gaffe during a Woot auction. About 100 of 6,200 refurbished Xoom Wi-Fi tablets sold during auctions between October and December are believed to have still had some private data stored inside. These could have included anything from account logins through to personal files, Motorola said.
Those who had bought the refurbs were being asked to check with Motorola as to whether they're affected and return the Android tablets to completely scrub them of the data. The recall is voluntary and assumes owners didn't delete the information themselves.
Anyone who had bought and promptly returned a Xoom Wi-Fi to Amazon, Best Buy, BJ's Wholesale, eBay, Office Max, Radio Shack, Sam's Club, or Staples was getting a free two-year subscription to Experian's ProtectMyID in case one of the 100 turned out to be malicious or had the refurb tablet compromised. Any Wi-Fi versions sold before or after the timeframe, as well as any 3G/4G versions, should be safe.
The issue, though small, isn't likely to help Motorola's current position. It shipped one million Xooms all year and didn't fare as well as ASUS, Samsung, or other tablet designers, even when excluding the iPad.