In July last year, it was reported that Apple, Google and Microsoft had listened to voice assistant-related recordings for training, according tomedia MSPoweruser. The main problem at the time was that users were not notified and that the recordings would be listened to for training and quality purposes. According to the Guardian, there may be more problems now, as the security surrounding these audit processes can be worrying.
According to a contractor who examined the quality of Skype and Cortana’s conversations, the work was carried out by a third-party service department that employed few staff and some worked at their homes in Beijing. Websites that view recordings on a personal laptop are reportedto with only a username and password, no two-step verification, and all users have the same password for “management”. In addition, login details are sent in plain text via e-mail, which means that they can be easily intercepted by third parties.
Contractors check thousands of records every day, including some sensitive ones. “After self-education on computer security, it sounds crazy to now give me a URL, username and password,” the contractor told the Guardian. “I’ve heard all sorts of unusual conversations, including possibly domestic violence. “
Microsoft said it no longer uses third-party services and said it had moved them to “security facilities” outside China. Microsoft told the Guardian: “Last summer, we carefully reviewed the processes we use and the communication we use with our customers. As a result, we have updated the Privacy Statement to make this work clearer, and since then we have moved these comments to security facilities in a few countries. We will continue to take steps to provide customers with greater transparency and control over how we manage their data. “