As if we haven’t been hearing enough about the Amazon echo and Alexa it seems there is something much worse going on now. Could Alexa be recording your conversations?
One Portland Oregon resident received a call from a friend only to learn something quite terrifying. Her Amazon Alexa smart speaker actually recorded a private conversation she had with her husband and recorded it only to send it to a random person in her contact list. Amazon, of course, is trying to deflect this and claim that Alexa must have spoken with background noises and merely made some misinterpretations. Danielle (who did not share her last name with news sources) claims she was right beside the device and that it never said a word.
Danielle told KIRO7 as follows:
“They said ‘our engineers went through your logs, and they saw exactly what you told us, they saw exactly what you said happened, and we’re sorry.’ He apologized like 15 times in a matter of 30 minutes and he said we really appreciate you bringing this to our attention, this is something we need to fix!”
“He told us that the device just guessed what we were saying,”
You see, Danielle and her husband did not believe the coworker who had called to tell them that he had been sent a recording of their conversation from their Alexa device until he began to tell them what they had said (they were talking about hardwood floors.) Once it became apparent that he was not lying they unplugged every single device throughout their home. She could not believe someone over 100 miles away knew what she and her husband were talking about in the privacy of their own home.
According to KIRO7 after reaching out to Amazon this is the response they got:
“Amazon takes privacy very seriously. We investigated what happened and determined this was an extremely rare occurrence. We are taking steps to avoid this from happening in the future”
“Echo woke up due to a word in background conversation sounding like ‘Alexa.’ Then, subsequent conversation was heard as “send message” request. At which point, Alexa said out loud ‘to whom?’ At which point, the background conversation was interpreted as a name in the customer’s contact list. Alexa then asked out loud ‘[contact name], right?’ Alexa then interpreted background conversation as ‘right.’ As unlikely as the string of events is, we are evaluating options to make this case even less likely.”
Their explanation sounds like a load of bull now, doesn’t it? Amazon is even being reluctant to refund Danielle for her devices that she will NEVER be plugging in again. What do you think about all of this?