Virtual Voice Assistance Alexa, Siri etc and Corporate Confidentiality

With Alexa, Siri and other virtual voice assistants listening in the background and parsing the data on their servers, I would like to hear your thoughts on Corporate Confidentiality. We don’t have any control on what data gets captured and uploaded, how the dats is mined on their servers, its still confidential information which is not supposed to get onto 3rd party servers.

Does that mean in the very near future, I would see Corporates mandating that you ensure that there are no Virtual Voice assistances listening to the confidential messages especially for working from home and on the road employees.

I think this will very much depend on what you do, and how secure the data must be. Corporations banning this would likely ban working from home because they couldn’t ensure no-one has a parabolic microphone pointed at your window.

We know these devices listen all the time, locally, until they hear their wake word/command. Of course, if you have a client, project, or similar with a name similar to one of these, then you should be aware - but I’ve personally found I tend not to say “Hey Siri” unless I’m talking to or about Siri (though Alexa is perhaps a more common name).

I’m curious as to how many people who work for a corporation with strict security even have these devices - let alone somewhere they would work if working from home. Of course, muting the microphone would always work regardless.

I work in a fairly secure environment and have never considered the impact of this sort of technology on my ability to work from home. There are certainly conversations I wouldn’t have in front of a data collection device of any kind…but then, I probably wouldn’t have those on an open device, either.

I think one way to address this is to set your iDevices to power save mode. This should - if I understand correctly - disable Siri voice activation. So, if you do not need instant notifications at work, this might be a solution (and your iPhone saves battery until you pick it up for your commute home, too…). Obviously this is no solution for folks who work from home…

Thinking ahead, this applies to even people working from work locations too. If you have your iPhone with you and you have changed the “Wake” word from Siri to any common name. Not that I am paranoid now, :slight_smile: Just as we see the devices making our lives better, there could be legal restrictions making the same harder to use them :slight_smile:

I have a few friends who work in secure environments (government roles mostly), and they have lockers they are required to leave their phones in before they go into their actual office room - and it’s been this way since mobile phones became a thing. That sort of environment tends to be very locked down already!