Apple has completely paused letting contractors listen to Siri voice recordings worldwide (and says it will offer opt-out later), and Google – feeling hot under the collar after German regulators started an investigation – has stopped its contractors listening in Europe.
Now it’s Amazon’s turn to respond to growing concerns about how sensitive personal conversations recorded by digital home assistants are being reviewed by third-party contractors.
Bloomberg reports that Amazon has announced a new privacy feature that allows customers globally to prevent their voice commands from being reviewed by humans.
Amazon, like Google and Apple, contracts thousands of people around the world to help improve its voice-operated digital assistants by listening to recordings, transcribing what they said, and providing feedback to improve speech recognition.
To ensure that no-one listens to the voice recordings that your Alexa device collects, go to “Settings”, click on the Alexa Privacy link, and choose “Manage How Your Data Improves Alexa”.
Note that this doesn’t stop your Alexa uploading recordings to Amazon’s servers, only that they won’t then be reviewed by humans.
For details on how to delete past Alexa recordings, read this guide.