IoT Monitoring Devices Raise New Privacy Concerns

I’ve started to watch Star Trek Discovery and I’m reminded of how characters in Starfleet facilities can just say “computer,” ask any sort of question, and get an intelligent response from their era’s more advanced AI. We’re finally starting that get that nifty technology, but one thing Starfleet doesn’t seem concerned with is whether their AI is secure.

Amazon debuted their Echo line of Internet of Things (IoT) devices in November 2014. Google debuted their Home line of devices in November 2016. Both devices enable users to use their voice to interact with Amazon or Google’s AI software and the Internet to engage in various tasks, such as playing music, podcasts, and audio books, answering questions about weather and traffic, automating other compatible smart devices, purchasing merchandise, hands-free phone calling, receiving news updates, and calendar scheduling. It’s all pretty novel and convenient, but many people have raised privacy and security concerns. I’ve written about some of the information security concerns of IoT devices here.

All Amazon Echo and Google Home devices feature microphones, which usually listen to everything around them at all times. Some models such as the Echo Look, Echo Show, and Echo Spot also contain cameras which can possibly watch whichever room you put them in.

Tech Experts Remain Somewhat Divided on These Types of Devices When It Comes to Privacy

Some people in the tech media really love these devices. While reviewing the Google Home, WIRED’s David Pierce wrote, “Home recited the answer to ‘What’s the difference between acetaminophen and ibuprofen,’ quickly, informed me that giving my dog squash is totally fine as long as it’s cooked, and told me the Cubs won game six. Google has spent the last few years refining the ‘answer boxes’ that appear atop your search results and provide context. That (Read more...)

*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from Cylance Blog authored by Kim Crawley. Read the original post at: https://threatmatrix.cylance.com/en_us/home/iot-monitoring-devices-raise-new-privacy-concerns.html