[Wired, Getty Images]
Amazon has patched the flaw, but its discovery underscores the importance of locking down your voice assistant interactions.
Attackers could also have installed a malicious skill to steal even more data.
Smart-assistant devices have had their share of privacy missteps, but they’re generally considered safe enough for most people. New research into vulnerabilities in Amazon’s Alexa platform, though, highlights the importance of thinking about the personal data your smart assistant stores about you—and minimizing it as much as you can.
Findings published on Thursday by the security firm Check Point reveal that Alexa’s web services had bugs that a hacker could have exploited to grab a target’s entire voice history, meaning their recorded audio interactions with Alexa. Amazon has patched the flaws, but the vulnerability could have also yielded profile information, including home address, as well as all of the “skills,” or apps, the user had added for Alexa. An attacker could have even deleted an existing skill and installed a malicious one to grab more data after the initial attack.