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Convenience Brings Security Concerns: A Look at Amazon Echo and Google Home

David Bosley

“Smart speakers” like Amazon Echo and Google Home are expected to be top sellers during this year’s holiday season, but despite their immense popularity, many experts are concerned about the security of these devices.

Amazon Echo and Google Home will undoubtedly revolutionize the way we search for information. When we search with our voice, it’s much different than the way we type it out, which means search algorithms will need to adapt. However, it’s what we’re saying when the devices aren’t activated that is worrisome.

Like any device, smart speakers are also at risk of being hacked, and some experts are also worried that they could be used against owners by the “good guys.”

“The always listening feature is primarily a threat from the police, who could get a court order to secretly eavesdrop on you,” Robert Graham of Errata Security tells CEPro.

Even if you choose not to put a smart speaker in your home, you could find yourself in a room with one anyway. The Wynn Las Vegas recently announced that an Amazon Echo will be placed in all 4,748 of its hotel rooms this coming summer to improve the guest experience. One feature of the Echo is its reviewable search history. At the moment, it’s not clear if future guests or hotel staff will have access to this information after checkout.

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