Amazon Echo could be recording your conversations secretly

Amazon Echo could be recording your conversations secretly

Amazon Echo could be recording your conversations secretly

A couple from OR were shocked to find out that their Alexa-powered speaker recorded a private conversation in their home and sent to a person in their contact list.

"My husband and I would joke and say I'd bet these devices are listening to what we're saying", the Echo owner Danielle told local news station KIRO 7. A sentence in the following conversation sounded like "send message", and, after the virtual assistant asked who the recipient should be, Alexa chose a contact and sent a message based on what it heard.

"I felt invaded", the woman, only identified as Danielle, said in the report.

No matter how suspicious it has seemed that Amazon is encouraging us to put listening devices in every room of our homes, the company has always said that its Echo assistants are not listening in on or recording conversations. 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". At which point, Alexa said out loud "To whom?"

However, Alexa's integration into society has been rocked by the claims of a family from Portland in the U.S. saying a private conversation was recorded by the diminutive device. Initially, the problem spawned thoughts of someone hacking into her system, with the employee suggesting she unplug her device before digging deeper.

Danielle and her husband were talking together at home when a colleague of her husband phoned up to warn them that their Alexa device had been hacked. However, Danielle and her husband were not given any specifics on what caused the Alexa issue in the first place. "Then, the subsequent conversation was heard as a "send message" request", a spokesman said.

Amazon confirmed the woman's conversation had been inadvertently recorded and sent, blaming an "unlikely" string of events for the error.

This isn't the first time that Amazon's smart speaker has garnered scrutiny over potential eavesdropping. We investigated what happened and determined this was an extremely rare occurrence. Back in March this year, Alexa was in news after it made random creepy laughs.

One family is looking at their Amazon Alexa unit with a bit more caution after recent events.

Also, notice that Amazon doesn't say how Alexa's recording of the chat was triggered.

It's unknown if the couple had the volume turned all the way down on their device or if they just didn't hear Alexa's multiple spoken replies during the message process. Amazon is yet to clarify this, but many users of the home speakers will ask whether there are cases where Alexa could be recording without their explicit permission.

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