Smart Speakers could put certain people at risk

They are always listening. Credit: Creative Commons

Cyber security experts are cautioning influential individuals against using smart speakers in their homes due to security risks.

Devices like Amazon Echo and Google Nest, which respond to voice commands, have gained popularity but also raise concerns about privacy.

Professor Sadie Creese from Oxford University highlighted the dangers, explaining that smart speakers could provide hackers with valuable insights into the lives of high-profile individuals, making them susceptible to coercion or threats. She advised against having such devices, comparing it to inviting surveillance into one’s living room.

Smart devices are always listening

While Professor Creese’s warning primarily targets prominent figures, cybersecurity expert Professor Alan Woodward warns that all smart devices should be treated as “always on.” He suggests positioning cameras away from private spaces and checking what data smart speakers collect.

Although major tech companies have faced lawsuits over data privacy, Professor Woodward recommends purchasing smart speakers from reputable brands like Amazon or Google to mitigate security risks. Cheaper alternatives may compromise security. He stresses that no device is completely secure and advises users to assume potential vulnerabilities.

While smart speakers offer convenience, users, especially those in the public eye, should be cautious of the privacy implications and consider security measures when using such devices.

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Written by

Julian Phillips

Born in the UK, has lived in 9 countries, before finally coming to Spain in 2015. Currently living in Almeria and working out of the EWN office in Mojacar.