by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
The electronic “smart home” promises endless convenience and security. People will control the temperature of their home from their office. This fall, Walmart will launch a service that will let a delivery worker unlock a house with an app and then stock its refrigerator with food, all monitored by a live camera on the worker’s chest.
It all sounds too good to be true. And maybe it is.
Before we plunge headlong into the Brave New World of smart homes, let’s pause and consider potential bugs in the system. …
… The next possible Big Tech privacy invasion could come with residential surveillance cameras. Ring, which is mostly owned by Amazon, and other companies are busy installing security cameras in or around a customer’s home. …
… There’s also the potential for ubiquitous security cameras to become part of a comprehensive surveillance state.
But it’s not just law enforcement that has to be monitored. Amazon keeps a copy of everything Alexa records after it hears its name. Apple’s Siri also keeps recordings to help train their artificial intelligences.
“They may try to disassociate it from you and remove your username or email address, but just the same, they’ll have actual people listen to it so they can transcribe it,” Jeremy Gillula of the Electronic Frontiers Foundation told the Daily Beast. “So I hope you didn’t say anything embarrassing, because that may become fodder for these people to laugh at.”
Data breaches are sadly all too routine as hackers and rogue employees often move faster than those trying to stop them. The potential for abuse is rampant.