Report: Apple Contractors Eavesdrop On Sexual Encounters, Private Discussions Through Siri

Posted: Jul 29 2019, 7:32am CDT | by , in Technology News


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Report: Apple contractors eavesdrop on sexual encounters, private discussions through Siri

A new report citing an Apple whistleblower says that the company's contractors listen to users' private discussions using Siri recordings.

A startling report from The Guardian has claimed that contractors working for Apple around the world regularly eavesdrop on users’ Siri interactions. The report claims that these contractors secretly listen to couples having sex, private medical discussions, drug deals and other private conversations.

Apple outsources part of its process to grade Siri conversations and interactions that helps the company improve the quality of its virtual assistance program, the report said. These contractors “grade” Siri conversations based on several factors. For example, these contractors are supposed to figure out whether or not a Siri response was helpful to the user. They also see if Siri was activated intentionally or accidentally, the report said.

In its policy note, Apple states that Siri collects data to improve user experience. But the company doesn’t mention that the data is actually used by humans for quality checks.

Apple told the source publication that less than 1% of daily Siri conversations are used for grading.

But given the amount of Siri usage around the world, the impact of human intervention in Siri interactions is quite sizable. As of 2018, about 500 million people use Siri.

Apple’s Siri software can be accidentally activated quite easily, after which the app starts recording conversations without the user knowing, the report said, citing an whistleblower working at Apple.

The whistleblower said that there have been “countless” instances when users’ private conversations were recorded. These conversations or interactions include private discussions between doctors and patients, sexual encounters and business deals. These recordings also show user location, contact details and app data.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/26" rel="author">Fahad Saleem</a>
Fahad Saleem is an experienced technology writer with special interest in Apple.




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