Amazon's Alexa Spying on Users - BestCyberNews: Online News Presenter in the present world

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Amazon's Alexa Spying on Users

Amazon's virtual assistant Alexa is the most sold Intelligent Personal Assistant (IPA) ever, However, with its rise in popularity, one of the main concerns with IPAs is privacy; specifically revolving around the fear of unknowingly being recorded.

Alexa is an always-listening voice-activated smart home speaker that allows you to get things done by using your voice, like playing music, setting alarms, and answering questions.

The security researchers at Checkmarx created a proof-of-concept voice-driven 'skill' for Alexa that forces device to indefinitely record surround voice to secretly eavesdrop on users’ conversations and then also sends the complete transcripts to a third-party website.

The researchers show that when a user opens up a session with the calculator app, it also creates a second session without verbally indicating the user that the microphone is still active.

Checkmarx reported the issue to Amazon, and the company has already addressed the problem by regularly scanning for malicious skills that "silent prompts or that listen for unusual lengths of time" and kicking them out of their official store.

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