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Alexa Tells All
News Bytes 05/25/2018 24 Comments

Amazon calls it an “unlikely” string of events. But Alexa, the artificial intelligence-generated voice of Amazon’s Echo personal assistant device, goofed. As feared by many who don’t want the Echo in their homes, Alexa recorded a family’s private conversation—and then sent the recording to someone else.

A woman and her husband say they were contacted by one of her husband’s employees. He told them he had received an audio file of the married couple talking. Thankfully, the conversation was nothing too personal. The pair was discussing hardwood floors, the wife says.

But how was it captured and sent, and why?

According to Amazon, the Echo assistant device interpreted a word in the conversation as “Alexa.” That command makes the device wake up. It then interpreted another part of the conversation as “send message.” At that point, Amazon’s statement said, “Alexa said out loud, ‘To whom?’ and background conversation was interpreted as a name found in the couple’s contact list. Amazon then says that Alexa asked for confirmation to send the recording to that person, and interpreted something else in the conversation as the word “right,” directed to the Echo.

Amazon says it is “evaluating options to make this case even less likely” in the future.

The woman in the home says that every room in her family’s house is wired with Amazon devices to control heat, lights, and—believe it or not—security.

(AP Photo: An Amazon Echo device sites on a balcony outside an Amazon office in Seattle, Washington.)

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Most recent comments

1st comment

All of the new tech is really cool and convenient, but in my opinion, unsafe. These 'Echo Dots' and 'Alexas' can lead to communication from the person who owns it, to the people who made it. As I said, these devices aren't as safe as we would like, and not trustworthy. See what I mean? : )

Natilee's sister, Brenna

First comment!!

Yipes! That's creepy.... I mean, how could Alexa just 'pick up' all those words from the conversation? It just seems fishy.

Natilee's sister, Brenna

Never mind, not first comment. Ruth posted as I was typing, lol. :)

Alexa

Yikes! We have one! And it "wakes up " all the time even though we didn't say its name. Does anyone else have one?

Natilee's sister, Brenna

I don't, but my friend does. She always asks it to make alpaca noises!
:')

These devices are creepy....

These devices are creepy.....I turned Alexa off on my tablet:) They do record what you ask Alexa, but if you want, you can delete your history. (If you go to your Amazon account, >My Devices, should be listed. If you look around a little, there will be an option to delete your history with it, hope this helps:)

Anna C that DOES help! Thank

Anna C that DOES help! Thank you for that info! I do not have an Alexa or Echo Dot, but my Grandma and Grandpa have Alexa. I just emailed this to them, because they like to have MANY conversations that need to be private between them. And my neighborhood bestie has an Echo Dot, so I will tell her about this supposable 'Incident.' I agree with anyone who said that this 'incident' seems fishy.

Your welcome Isabel B! I

Your welcome Isabel B! I would like to have an Echo Dot or something, but I would probably keep it unplugged when I wasn't using it:)

What about Siri?

My Mom had Siri but disabled her after Siri listened in and her phone started popping up ads about what she was talking about. That is suspicious!

Wow, I didn't know Siri did

Wow, I didn't know Siri did that.....

Karisma S

That's kinda funny. My family doesn't have one of those.

Karisma S

I mean Alexia, not Siri.

Anna C that is so smart! You

Anna C that is so smart! You have two things that are great about that. 1. You don't get incidents happen like this one. 2. You save electricity!

That is creepy.....

That is creepy.....

Not just Alexa

Its not just siri and alexa that track you your iPhone is most likely being tracked by Apple and add companies I get ads all the time for things like that Erica A (exp. we went to play trivia at a restaurant and one of the categories was a TV show we had never heard of we talked about it and the next day it was the 1ST "Recommend for you" on Netflix YIKES!)

Alexa can't be trusted.

I saw a video once and (no joke!!!) a guy asked his Alexa if she was recording him. She said (and i quote!!): "When you wake me up, I record your voice and send it to Amazon." Super creepy, in my opinion. If you want to see it, go to YouTube and search: Don't ask Alexa these questions.

I didn't know she would

I didn't know she would actually tell you something like that!

creepy stuff

that is creepy, and is why I do not have one.

Creepy what if

Creepy what if it was something personal

SHIVER!!!

This is sending shivers down my spine! How WEIRD.

that's so freaky that that

that's so freaky that that did that

Àaaaàwaààqàaaaaaaaa

My Sunday school teacher got one of those.she sead something mean to it to see wat it would say and it sead "you heart my feelings" that's... CrEePy.

my friend has one

my friend has one

Massimo wrote the comment

Massimo wrote the comment above this one.

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