Samsung’s Smart TV is eavesdropping on your conversations, the company insists it’s all cool
The intention of this tracking, as by most other companies, is good. Samsung wants to track everything you say around its TV, only to make its voice-recognition technology better. The improvement in the said feature will unarguably help the consumers as their TV set will adopt to their accent among other aspects.
But then again, privacy is a very serious subject. Regardless of what the company wants to do with this data, no one should be comfortable with the fact that all their conversations are being monitored. In Samsung’s case, however, things are a little more complex. The company notes that it will be handing over the data to a third-party client. If I were using a Samsung TV, I would at least want to know who that third-party client is.
In a statement to The Daily Beast, Samsung assures that it is taking industry-standard measures to encrypt consumer’s personal information. “Samsung takes consumer privacy very seriously. In all of our Smart TVs we employ industry-standard security safeguards and practices, including data encryption, to secure consumers’ personal information and prevent unauthorized collection or use,” the company said.
“Voice recognition, which allows the user to control the TV using voice commands, is a Samsung Smart TV feature, which can be activated or deactivated by the user. The TV owner can also disconnect the TV from the Wi-Fi network,” it added.
This isn’t the first time we are warned that our smart TV sets recording our conversations. LG TV sets were accused of being involved in the same practice back in late 2013. The Korean technology conglomerate had begun an investigation and assured users that it will take the required measures to protect their privacy.
The problem with TV capturing data, in addition to the aforementioned reasoning, is that there is a possibility that a hacker group could tap into our TV, or company’s server and make those data publicly available.
As it turns out, most of the assumptions George Orwell foresaw of the future in his novel 1984, are true. The dystopian novel, which was written about 70 years ago, was right about how surveillant our world would become in the future. In his novel, he talked about inhabitants of a fictional place Oceania who had no real privacy. Their apartments were equipped with two-way telescreens so that they may be watched or listened to at any time.