We’re Listening

Aaaaand, THIS is why I won’t have one.

SAN FRANCISCO – A Portland family’s private conversations were recorded by their Amazon Echo smart speaker and emailed to a random phone contact of the father, they told a local TV station.

Amazon explained that an unforseen combination of random words in a conversation the family didn’t realize was being overheard by Alexa trigged an action no one expected, least of all Amazon, which is now working to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

The Oregon family contacted Amazon to investigate after a private conversation in their home was recorded by their Amazon Echo — the voice-controlled smart speaker — and the recorded audio was sent to the phone of someone in Seattle who was in the father’s contact list.

“My husband and I would joke and say I’d bet these devices are listening to what we’re saying,” Danielle, who did not want us to use her last name, told KIRO TV in Seattle.