Top Investor: Big Tech Using Smart Speakers for Surveillance

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Top investor reveals Big Tech is using smart speakers to spy on users

A top tech investor has warned that Big Tech companies such as Amazon and Google are using smart speakers for surveillance purposes.

In an interview with Yahoo News, John Borthwick, of Betaworks said that the information recorded by the devices and relayed back to the host companies cannot be described any other way.

“I would say that there’s two or three layers sort of problematic layers with these new smart speakers, smart earphones that are in market now,” Borthwick said.

“And so the first is, from a consumer standpoint, user standpoint, is that these, these devices are being used for what’s — it’s hard to call it anything but surveillance,” Borthwick added. reports: “I personally believe that you, as a user and as somebody who likes technology, who wants to use technology, that you should have far more rights about your data usage than we have today,” Borthwick, a former Time Warner and AOL executive, also said.

Recent findings have indicated that Apple is monitoring audio via Siri, and Amazon is doing the same via Alexa.

Reports have also suggested that Google employees are listening to users’ voice commandsfor Google Assistant, with Facebook doing the same via the Messenger app.

Following the revelations all the companies have all said they have either stopped the practice or will automatically opt users out of voice sample collection.

This technology has led some people to draw comparisons to George Orwell’s 1984, and a quote from the book illustrates creepy similarities.

“The telescreen received and transmitted simultaneously. Any sound Winston made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it; moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard.”

Facebook recently announced the rollout of its new ‘Portal’ smart speakers, which it brags have a camera that can automatically follow users around the room.

Undoubtedly wary about fears the technology could be exploited to spy on its users following the company’s data abuse scandals, Facebook has even included a camera cover that can be slipped over the lens.

Security researchers have also discovered flaws in the technology that could allow unwanted eavesdroppers to hack into the devices.

Sean Adl-Tabatabai
About Sean Adl-Tabatabai 17816 Articles
Having cut his teeth in the mainstream media, including stints at the BBC, Sean witnessed the corruption within the system and developed a burning desire to expose the secrets that protect the elite and allow them to continue waging war on humanity. Disturbed by the agenda of the elites and dissatisfied with the alternative media, Sean decided it was time to shake things up. Knight of Joseon (