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Smart speakers at home are being abused by phishers

     
2:37 pm on Oct 21, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Smart speakers: This technology is going to be a target for hackers, and once again, new reports are out by researchers that have disclosed another vulnerability, reported earlier this year, but apparently still unpatched.

Hackers can abuse Amazon Alexa and Google Home smart assistants to eavesdrop on user conversations without users' knowledge, or trick users into handing over sensitive information.


[zdnet.com...]
3:15 pm on Oct 21, 2019 (gmt 0)

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As it says in the linked article these are simply additional concerns. Most/all consumer IoT devices are next to wide open and abuse scripts are readily available, little expertise required.

Perhaps even more unsettling is the fact that servers are required for function and all data on those servers belong not to the user but to the product/service organisation.

See the Amazon Ring doorbell-camera no warrant required data sharing with LEO over the past year.

Big Brother is not just counting keystrokes at work he is listening and watching you (and all who visit) at home as well.
Analogy: second hand privacy invasion is as detrimental as second hand smoke... And the IoT product/service organisations are behaving as the tobacco companies of yore...
3:33 pm on Oct 21, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I hate to be one of the tin foil hat brigade, and have often been an early adopter of technology. But, I don't see the need for a smart speaker. As a speaker, they are not the best, therefore, it's only convenience (laziness), or, for some that, perhaps, have a disability, there are great benefits.

Why do i want to turn on my kettle with a smart speaker? It need me to fill it with water, first.

Why do i want to turn my lights off and on with a smart speaker? I turn them on as I walk past, and turn them off as i leave the room. I have a room occupancy detector in my garage as that was one light we forgot was left on.

Why do i want to know the weather outside? I look out of the window.

And then, there's the system vulnerability.

It's a tech gimmick, imho, and a marketing persons dream.
4:03 pm on Oct 21, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I've grown to love my Alexa devices, I keep buying more of them. And giving them as gifts. All of the smart devices are way over hyped, but for the price, the utility of Alexa is a good value for me. My Google Home thing, not so much. Alexa, play Sleep Sounds, then Alexa, play ocean. :-)
10:51 am on Oct 22, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I find it interesting that they are sold as "smart speakers" when their main function is to act as microphones?

I wonder how many people would put "internet connected microphones" in their house vs "internet connected speakers"?
11:10 am on Oct 22, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I wonder how many people would put "internet connected microphones" in their house vs "internet connected speakers"?

Interesting thought.

I'm not sure people realise what happens to the data from their discussions and comments.
3:54 pm on Oct 22, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Smart speakers at home are being abused by phishers

I am shocked !