show up New report The Electronic Security Company (Check Point) has some security holes in the Alexa voice assistant from Amazon that can be exploited to access audio recordings and personal data of users stored on Amazon servers.
Check Point researchers discovered these vulnerabilities while testing the Alexa voice assistant application for the mobile phone, where testing showed that these vulnerabilities could allow hackers to:
- Remotely install apps on users’ devices via Alexa account without their knowledge.
- Access to the list of all applications installed in users’ devices.
- Remotely delete apps without the user’s knowledge.
- Access to audio recordings.
- Access to personal user data that includes: phone numbers, home addresses, user names, and bank data history.
(Check Point) Amazon reported these security vulnerabilities in June 2020, and Amazon has already fixed them within a short period, and said: “There is no evidence of any of these vulnerabilities being used against our customers or disclosing any customer information.”
As Oded Vanunu, Head of Vulnerability Research at Check Point, said: In a statement to (Wired) magazine: “The vulnerabilities discovered in the services of Alexa voice assistant were not clear enough to be exploited in carrying out an attack.”
Why should you delete your voice assistant record regularly?
Although the hackers did not exploit these loopholes in carrying out attacks to steal data, the fact that they exist confirms a point that security experts constantly raise, which is that voice assistants such as: Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, pose a great privacy risk.
We do not deny here that voice aids represent a great technical development, and that they made it easier to do a lot of tasks through voice commands, as well as manage smart homes and control devices, but there are some security and privacy settings that you must take into account for a better and safer experience.
You can activate the feature (automatically delete audio recordings) in Alexa, and Google Assistant, so that it will be deleted automatically after a specified period of time. While the voice assistant (Siri) from Apple does not provide this feature, but Apple at least is working to secure the identity of its users strongly.
It is also easy to manually delete the record of your voice assistant, be it Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri at any time.
According to what was stated in Support page Google; There are some voice commands that you can tell the Google Assistant to delete your audio recordings at certain intervals, and they include:
- “Hey Google; I want to delete my last conversation. ”
- “Hey Google; I’d like to delete today’s activity. ”
- “Hey Google; I want to delete this week’s activity. ”
- “Hey Google; The conversation was not directed at you ”and that’s to delete the last phrase you momentarily said.
And if you want to delete individual records, or everything you have ever requested from the Google Assistant, you can do so through your Google account.
Amazon also allows you to delete your recordings via voice commands, but you must first activate the Enable deletion by voice feature, through the Alexa app settings.
Once you activate this feature, you can say this daily to your device: “Alexa, delete everything that you said today,” and whether it is (Amazon Echo) or (Echo Dot) or any other device will delete all the audio recordings and commands stored in your account throughout the day.