Alexa is the personal assistant that follows your commands and serves you well. Amazon’s Alexa is popular amongst almost every household in the United States as of now, and the problems are started coming out. According to the recent report, Thousands of Amazon Employees have access to your recordings done on Alexa machine. According to the report, thousands of employees could hear the recordings done by Alexa Remotely, transcribe them manually to remove the gap of understanding for Echo software. As Alexa is always listening to the surroundings when it’s ON, the employees could hear the chattering when they are monitoring the feed.
This is the secret project of Amazon to listen to the recordings and then provide the transcription for Alexa’s Echo software to reduce the error rate. The report in Bloomberg mentions that the company has signed Non-disclosure agreements with the contracted employees, who have to listen to the recordings for nine-hours each day. Each employee could listen up to 1,000 small audio clips and provide accurate transcriptions for the clips. Some of the employees working on this project are full-time, and some are on short-term contracts.
As Amazon employees are overhearing the recorded clips and sometimes the live conversations, they might hear anything related to the crime. In such cases, the company has implemented different procedures to take instant action against such users to prevent any crime from happening. Also, Amazon employees will ignore the conversations in which anything related to the banking or financial details is shared and mark the transcription as “Critical Data” to discard the clip to protect privacy. Amazon’s Alexa is not the only service that secretly records the audio conversations behind their backs for Human analysis. Apple’s Siri and Google’s Assistant send the recorded audio files to the teams for regular transcription from humans, but they also ignore the critical data from the transcription procedure.