Amazon Workers May Be Listening To What You Tell Alexa

Amazon Echo Link Amp review

Amazon Echo Link Amp review

Bloomberg reported that Amazon has teams of folks around the world tasked with transcribing recordings pulled from Echo customers' homes and offices.

Amazon says that the people are there to help "eliminate gaps Alexa's understanding of human speech and help it better respond to commands", but questions are understandably being asked as to whether users are aware that recordings of their commands and requests are being listened to. However, employees will still have the Amazon account number and the device's serial number associated with the conversation they are listening to.

In its report, Bloomberg quotes as its source, "seven people who have worked on the program".

Employees in Romania, India, Costa Rica and the United States are given recordings of some people speaking to their Alexa devices in order to verify that the virtual assistant is correctly understand them, according to Bloomberg.

A nine hour shift will see each employee listen to up to 1,000 voice recordings.

In response to Bloomberg's report, Amazon said that it only annotates "an extremely small sample" of voice recordings to "improve the customer experience".

"We have strict technical and operational safeguards, and have a zero tolerance policy for the abuse of our system", said the company statement.

Amazon claims employees don't have direct access to discover who they are listening too.

Shake-up at Homeland Security goes beyond Nielsen’s exit
McAleenan is a longtime border official who is well-respected by members of Congress and within the administration. One individual changing her tone or sending Nielsen the slightest semblance of praise happens to be Minnesota Rep.

It was also stated that all of the information gathered is treated with high confidentiality and several security measures are in place throughout their facilities such as multi-factor authentication, encryption, and constant audits.

The issue raises privacy concerns at a time consumers are becoming more sensitive to the issue, especially when technology companies don't fully disclose how their personal is used.

Amazon is listening to customers through Alexa devices - with employees recording thousands of clips including a woman singing in the shower and a sex assault, it emerged last night.

Amazon said it uses these conversations to improve Alexa's "understanding of human speech". Sometimes, that means private information such as bank details or full names, which employees are supposed to flag as critical data.

As a result, workers occasionally hear things they shouldn't.

Many Echo device users have been surprised to learn that recordings of their voices may be listened to by humans.

Now, Amazon is at the center of a potentially massive data scandal which suggests workers, not just artificial intelligence, are listening to Alexa voice commands. However, particularly distressing or amusing recordings can be shared through employee chat rooms. Google has reviewers that train Assistant, but the clips don't have any personally identifiable information and the audio itself is distorted to prevent any identification.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.