August 8, 2019
The list of companies that enlist human workers to listen in on your personal conversations just won’t quit growing.
According to an investigation by Motherboard, Microsoft-owned Skype has been listening to audio of users speaking to one another via its translation service, which uses AI to convert language in nearly real-time.
While Skype states that it may analyze audio of phone calls conducted through the service to improve its abilities, it has never explicitly stated that humans would be doing that work.
Motherboard, which was supplied with documents, internal reports, and actual audio snippets, reports that the conversations include discussions between couples regarding relationship problems, weight loss, and what contractors described as ‘phone sex.’
The documents also show that contractors for Microsoft are analyzing voice-commands given to the company’s virtual assistant, Cortana, through which the program has picked up porn queries.
Most snippets reportedly last between 5 and 10 seconds but some may extend beyond that according to the source.
A whistleblower who provided Motherboard the information said he was concerned with how seriously the data collected by the company was being safeguarded.
‘The fact that I can even share some of this with you shows how lax things are in terms of protecting user data,’ the Microsoft contractor told Motherboard.
This article was posted: Thursday, August 8, 2019 at 3:07 am