Amazon is a nifty gadget. It can tell you the weather. It can play music. It can even order from Amazon.
But what you may not know is that the Amazon Echo can record your entire voice conversation, which is not surprising, considering it works via voice recognition to interact with its built-in digital assistant, Alexa. There's even a murder investigation that used Amazon Echo recordings as evidence.
So if you're worried that your conversations have been recorded or you somehow feel that it is affecting your privacy, you can easily access these recordings.
View Your Dialogue History
Amazon actually provided a help page to access your recording history.
To listen to your dialogue history, follow these steps:
• Open the Alexa app on your smartphone.
• Tap Settings located in the left navigation panel.
• Tap History.
You will see an interaction list. You can either Play or Delete this interaction. Simply tap Play if you want to listen.
To erase individual interactions, simply tap Delete voice recordings. What it does is it erases that specific audio file that got streamed to the Cloud. The associated Home screen cards are likewise deleted. If you want to remove only the Home screen cards, visit the Home screen and tap Remove card.
However, if you want to delete your entire conversation history, do the following:
• Go to Manage Your Content and Devices.
• Click the Your Devices tab.
• You will see a list of devices registered to your Amazon account. Choose your Alexa device.
• Select Manage voice recordings.
• Click Delete.
Amazon Echo And Your Voice
Why does the Amazon Echo record and keep your voice and your entire conversations? According to Amazon, it does this to "improve the accuracy of the results provided to you and to improve our services." Deleting these recordings will greatly "degrade your experience," according to Amazon.
However, if you are really bent on keeping your privacy protected from the ears of Amazon Echo, there is one simple way to do it: turn it off.
Alexa, the digital assistant in the Echo, starts listening when it hears its wake words: "Alexa," "Echo," "Computer," or "Amazon." You will know the device is ready when you see its outing ring glowing blue.
To turn it off, there is a switch for the microphone on the top of the device. When the button is red, it means the mic is turned off.
Remember, though, that once the mic is off, you cannot use its voice command features because it is not "listening." To turn it back on, simply flick the switch again.