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Prevent Amazon employees from listening to your Alexa recordings



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Amazon reviews only a small percentage of Alexa shots.


Tyler Lizenby / CNET

Last week, Amazon announced that it may opt-out of a program that used Amazon to improve by Alexa . Amazon employees listen to a small portion of the records to verify accuracy, and may provide private conversations and information to these employees. Amazon added the option after Apple and Google announced similar plans to stop listening to recordings.

Earlier this year, CNET revealed that Amazon keeps transcripts of your Alexa recordings even after you delete the audio portion of the interaction. The company has finally added the ability to delete records and transcripts.

You can disable the use of the website or the Alexa app on your phone.

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Screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

Use Website

You can visit Amazon's Alexa privacy settings website to opt out. Follow these steps:

  1. Click the box labeled Manage how your data improves Alexa .
  2. Uncheck "Help to improve Amazon services and develop new features" by clicking the button.


    Confirm your decision by clicking Shut Down.

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screenshots of Jason Cipriani / CNET

Or the Alexa app

Follow these steps to disable using the Alexa app on your phone:

  1. In the Alexa app, drag the menu out and tap Settings . ,
  2. Select Alexa Privacy .
  3. Tap Manage how your data improves Alexa .
  4. Disable Help Improve Amazon Services and Develop New Features by tapping the toggle button.
  5. Confirm your decision.

Amazon warns you that disabling this feature may cause speech recognition to fail, and you may have trouble using new features as they become available. But if you're worried about privacy, this is a small compromise to make sure no one hears your private recordings.

While we're at it, it's also a good idea to take a few minutes to search all the Alexa records and transcripts that Amazon keeps.


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