10 April 2020

Apple and Google stop workers playing back voice recordings

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Apple and Google are temporarily stopping workers listening to voice recordings captured by smart speakers and virtual assistants. reports citing BBC.

It follows a Guardian report that third-party contractors used by Apple had heard people having sex and discussing private medical information.

Siri and other services can activate in error after wrongly picking up sounds they mishear as their "wake" words.

Apple said the move would affect users worldwide.

Google suspended the practice across the EU on 10 July but has only just confirmed the fact in public.

Amazon - which also uses staff to transcribe some recordings - has not commented.

Technology companies use staff to "grade" voice recordings to improve their virtual assistants' accuracy rates in handling requests - and take steps to anonymise the source.

Google, for example, distorts the recording before it is listened to in order to disguise the user's voice.

2019.08.02 / 20:52
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