Your Smart TV May Be Listening to Your Private Conversations
Samsung's motto is "TV Has Never Been This Smart," but that might not be a completely positive thing.
Samsung smart TVs have a new and innovative voice command function that allows users to access services without using a remote control. But that technology might be working against you by capturing your private conversations.
"Please be aware that if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party through your use of Voice Recognition," Samsung notes in their terms and conditions policy.
Lance Ulanoff, editor-at-large of Mashable.com, told Bill Hemmer on "America's Newsroom" that for the voice command to work, it has to be able to parse users' words.
"Sometimes they can help you, Samsung itself can help you. But other times, they have to deliver what you said to a third party to get the help there," Ulanoff explained, noting that those third parties are trusted partners of Samsung.
"To be fair to Samsung, this is a big trend. How many different things do we have that listen to us now? We have Google Now, we have Microsoft Cortana, we have Amazon Echo with Alexi, Apple Siri."
Ulanoff said that the smart TV is only "listening" when you are engaging it - and a microphone appears on the screen when the voice recognition feature is activated - so you can always turn that function off.
"Which makes it useless," Ulanoff lamented. "Disconnect your WiFi and it's not a smart TV, it's just a 'dumb TV.'"
Watch the "America's Newsroom" clip above.