February 4, 2018

Your wiretap doesn't listen to your TV ads

I mean let's be serious about Amazon Alexa or smart speakers in general: After each update the devices are getting creepier and creepier. Every of them listens constantly about what you say and what you do and sending them to governmental agencies. Currently there is Super Bowl and most companies are creating the finest ads to get more customers jump in. This time Amazon is making a TV spot for its' product Alexa. You can imagine people saying the hotword "Alexa" in the advertisement over and over again. This might trigger some Echos in some living rooms. But not this time: Amazon pushed out an update to all Echos, that shouldn't make this happen. Via digital fingerprinting, the Echo tries to detect if that particular advertisement is currently played and then just not listening to the hotword, which is being said in that ad. If that advertisement ends, the Echo returns to normal state listening to everything what you do. It's actually a useful feature, but this is also very creepy. Amazon could make statistics about in how many living rooms this advertisement has been played, which is a nasty thing. So guys, don't buy a wiretap or your entire life will be sent to NSA and CIA.