"HEY ALEXA, purge me from your records," might end up being a command you might bark at your Amazon Echo, as the everything-seller is letting users order its virtual assistant to delete the voice recordings it has of them.
While we exaggerate for effect, the command that users can spout at Alexa to make it delete the recordings is: "Alexa, delete everything I said today."
Later down the line, Amazon will let the command "Alexa, delete what I just said", do the same thing.
We'll leave it up to you to work out why you might want Alexa to delete the recordings it has of you; perhaps you have got well into privacy, or maybe you don't want Alexa to know you like big butts and are not able to obfuscate the truth of the fact.
But being able to ask Alexa to remove such recordings is a heck of a lot easier than going into the Alexa app in your phone or logging into Amazon's website and finding and deleting such recordings manually.
Before you ask, Amazon sucks up such recordings to supposedly help improve the voice recognition services of its virtual assistant. Though it doesn't offer a means to delete voice recordings that have been stored for a while or schedule regular deletions, unlike Google and its ability to allow for the auto-deletion of location tracking data, for example.
Given that it came to light that Amazon employees are paid to listen to private Alexa chats, being able to purge records of one's more intimate exchanges - "hey Alexa, what are you wearing?" - might be a boon to some folks with, er, interesting ways to express themselves.
That being said, it's arguably not as worrying as Amazon Alexa staffers allegedly having access to users' home addresses.
And it raises the question of what type of data are we willing to give up in order to make use of smart assistants and slick smart home tech, We'll leave that up to you to decide. µ
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