Smart speakers find a place in more and more homes, with around 120 million of them alone in the US. However, this does not mean that there are doubts and controversies surrounding these gadgets. Currently many of us are familiar with the case in which Alexa accident recorded and sent a family's private conversation after a contact. It's enough to send cold fever on someone's spine, but don't chuck Amazon Echo just in the trash. There are steps you can take to protect your privacy – to review and remove Alexa's interactions.
Do Alexa save conversations?
First, we have to drive the myth that your Amazon Echo records everything that is said nearby. The device usually responds only when it hears its verb, Alexa (or the alternate wakewords Computer, Amazon, or Echo). However, it records most of the interactions you have with the voice assistant – these are Amazon orders or a song request. Although it may seem pretty commonplace, it is understandable if it makes you uncomfortable storing these interactions to the cloud.
There may also be situations when an Alexa-enabled device incorrectly adds words like wake-up words. "Alexa" or variations thereof are relatively common names in some countries, and certain combinations of words sound close to "Alexa" to activate a recording. In these cases, the device may accidentally record a call, it was not intended to be picked up.
It is worth mentioning that while most of your orders are processed by Alexa by software, in some cases the recordings are transferred to Amazon employees. Amazon does this to improve its machine learning algorithms. So a "tiny example" of voice commands is heard by people, but Amazon insists that surveys be fully anonymised.
How can you remove Alexa surveys?
The good news is that you can delete voice recordings at any time. A quick and easy way to remove recent recordings is to ask Alexa to do this for you. After enabling the Alexa program, you can only say, "Alexa, remove everything I said today".
For more control over the conversations Alexa records you can Alexa app on your smartphone or tablet. Here's what to do:
- Open the Alexa app on your smartphone and sign in with your Amazon account if necessary. Make sure it is the same account as the one connected to your speaker.
- Tap the Menu button and select institutions on the bottom of the sidebar.
- Tap Alexa account then Alexa Privacy.
- From there you can type Review voice history To see a list of Alexa recordings of all your Echo devices. At the top of the screen you can also change the date range of recordings.
- To delete a recording, tap the box on the left and then tap Remove selected recordings from the top of the page.
If you don't want to review recordings, but just want to remove them as quickly as possible, there's another method you can use. Make it Amazon's content and devices page On your computer, check Your devices. Click on the smart speaker that you want to remove history, followed by Voice Recorder. A Quick Warning screen with a removal button will appear. Simply click Remove and you're done!
These are our tips on how to review and remove Alexa recordings. Did you find any interesting recordings when reviewing your history? Let us know in the comments.