Samsung Warns Smart TVs may Snoop on your Conversations

samsung smarttvSamsung has revealed that its SmartTV service may collect conversations that occur in the room while it is switched on for voice recognition purposes, capturing and transmitting them to a third party company.

The information was disclosed as part of a supplement to the companys global privacy policy for its SmartTV service. Within the section on the voice recognition technology, the policy notes that “Samsung may collect and your device may capture voice commands and associated texts so that we can provide you with Voice Recognition features and evaluate and improve the features.

“Please be aware that if your spoke 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.”

The policy went on to say that even if voice recognition is not enabled, the company may still collect associated texts and other data so that it can evaluate the performance of the feature.

What the policy doesnt make clear is whether or not the SmartTV service and associated voice recognition technology will capture data only associated with voice commands issued to the television, or whether it will be constantly listening whenever it is switched on.

The SmartTV service also includes functionality for facial recognition, but Samsung stated that images captured through this technology remain on the device and are not transmitted to Samsung.