The Internatura Security Office, dependent on the Ministry of Economy, explains how we can make sure that our mobile is not listening to us
In 2016 the world discovered that former FBI Director James Comey and the all-powerful co-founder and president of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, covered the cameras of their laptops with duct tape. Zuckerberg, who took the blame before the US Senate for the abuse of the Cambridge Analytica company, who used the data of millions of users of the social network for the electoral campaign of current President Donald Trump.
A behavior that could seem socially somewhat disproportionate, almost manic, believing that the devices spy on us, listen to our conversations and even record us on video, is one of the things that the then director of the FBI and Zuckerberg had in common.
Is privacy then compatible with the use of devices such as smartphones, virtual assistants and other devices? If you ever had the impression that your Amazon Echo, Siri or Google Home turned on without mentioning the activation command, you are not crazy, they do it and also, to avoid this, from the mobile it is possible to deactivate this function and even check, one by one, the recordings made by these assistants.
From the Internet Security Office (OSI) they explain that the intelligent assistants remain listening to be able to activate at the moment in which their command is said (for example, Ok Google) and carry out the request. So if you are concerned about what the large companies may be doing with this personal information (in addition to frying you with personalized ads), the OSI recommends deactivating the recordings so that a record of everything you say is not kept and deleting all the history stored to date.
STOP GOOGLE FROM LISTENING TO YOU
In the case of Android phones, the steps to follow are as follows. From the Settings menu, find where Google is. Then select Manage your Google account and search for Data and personalization. In this menu, in Controls of your account activity you will see which options are activated, Activities on the Web and in Applications, Location history and YouTube history.
This time we are concerned with the first option, Activities on the Web and in Applications. Within this menu there are also several options such as including the history of websites and devices that use Google services, saving the activity of the use of applications on the device and including audio recordings.
When you press this option to deactivate it, Google will explain that it will no longer save the audio recordings but that it will continue to use its recognition technologies to process your audios and respond to you when you talk to Google services, well, their services their standards. To complete the process press Stop saving.
To access the history that Google has on you and listen to the recordings that you have made, like a Big Brother in which you are the protagonist and the only contestant, from the same menu where the recordings are deactivated, select Manage activity.
All information is meticulously classified by days, hours and type. Anything that contains an audio icon (such as a small speaker) is a recording that you can listen to by pressing the icon, view recording, and play.
To delete a specific element, select the three dots that will appear on the right and press delete. To delete everything at once and start a new life without Google on your heels, at the top right press the three dots, Delete activity by, mark since always, select all services, click Next and press Delete to feel with a standing out 1984.
WHAT IF APPLE IS LISTENING TO ME?
This time the name of the wizard changes, but the functions are similar. To deactivate that Siri does not keep a record of everything you say, go to Settings on your iPhone and look for the Siri section and search and select Activate when hearing Hey Siri.
If what you want to avoid is that the recordings are shared with Apple, in Settings look this time for Privacy and from Analysis and improvements deactivate the option Improve Siri and Dictation.
To delete the record of recordings that may exist, go back to the Siri and Search menu and select Siri History and Dictation to start using your device without indirect ears.