The compelling academic research conducted in 2018 cast doubt on certainty after a large-scale investigation into phones recording users' voices

Is the appearance of an ad feed on social media pages promoting a product you were talking about earlier just a coincidence? In fact, that is not the case.

In his article published in the French newspaper Le Parisien, writer Damien Licata Caruso said that the appearance of a similar advertisement gives the impression that a side conversation was conducted from one’s phone.

In fact; The feeling that there are listening ears recording the idea of ​​​​your travel or the brand of the shoes you intend to buy has become a common occurrence, and does not reflect the person’s suffering from a mental illness; Since the advent of smartphones and 4G mobile internet a decade ago, it is suspected of spying through these devices or rather the applications installed on them, in particular social networking sites, which easily obtain permission to use the microphone.

In this regard; Julie Carrell, a lawyer in a law firm specializing in data protection, says that from a legal point of view, since 2018, the GDPR has considered voice among the real personal data that should be protected.

“It is necessary to inform the user of the existence of such an order and to justify the organization on a legal basis that goes beyond simple consent,” Karel adds.

The writer believes that from a technical point of view, it is possible, despite the fact that no scientific study has proven that smartphones record through the voice receiver, and then control our intentions to purchase or discuss topics.

From a technical point of view, recording audio from the phone is possible, although no scientific study has proven that smartphones record through the voice receiver
From a technical point of view, recording audio from the phone is possible, although no scientific study has proven that smartphones record through the voice receiver

Absence of audio recording

The conclusive academic research was conducted in 2018 at Northeastern University in Boston and has cleared doubts with certainty after an extensive investigation.

Regarding this; “We tested about 17,000 popular apps on the Google Play Store and other download platforms, and we focused specifically on apps that require access to a computer,” says Dr. David Chauvins, a Ph.D. in computer science who has devoted a year to studying this issue in collaboration with several colleagues. The microphone and the camera, where we launched the apps and checked with a computer program whether the data from them contained audio, pictures, or video. But we didn’t detect any such audio recordings.”

As for Benoit Vault, as a cybersecurity expert at Quarkslab – a company that specializes in penetration testing and reverse engineering in Paris – “The microphone can only be turned on remotely if the user himself consents without leaving evidence that he is recording or that A listening device in the hardware of the electronic device.

Commenting on it; “Recording with a microphone is an inefficient method that requires processing and transmitting audio data that affects the phone battery,” says Antoine Moreno, co-founder of Toulouse-based start-up iod that repairs warrantied smartphones and removes advertising bugs.

Answering the question about the role of voice assistants such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and Apple’s Siri, Ferault says, “The microphone is always on so he doesn’t miss anything.” Voice command when these programs are running and everything stays on the device and is encrypted on it,” noting that eavesdropping on conversations is not the best way to produce specific ads.

Other more effective methods

Regarding this, Verault says, “It is unlikely that the audio data will be sent because it includes unprofitable human analytics studies, in contrast, Internet browsing data or geolocation can be analyzed automatically by algorithms,” and therefore the real danger is that smartphones do not need to eavesdrop in order to spy. We.

Antoine Moreno explains that personal advertising relies on Internet surfers’ cookies, the geolocation service provided by the phone’s global positioning system, and consent to access our contact list or photos that we download on the application.

Moreno points out that the user’s favorite apps speak the same language and communicate with each other thanks to comprehensive software mechanisms in order to form a clear picture of our preferences and habits, and these trackers are usually found in tech giants or new applications such as tuk-tuk.

Moreno emphasizes the fact that social networks are advertising agencies that spend billions to find out all the details of the user’s life.

At the end of the report; “They monitor our entire online lives through the sites we visit, the posts we like, and everything we look for,” says David Chauvins, noting at the same time that there is no need to listen to us thanks to having access to the most intimate details of life and selling that information to the highest paying party.

Mike Hunt

A writer and reviewer with good experience in the field of technology. He worked for a long time in technology news sites. He is interested in all news, mobile phones and modern technology. He has a strong resume. He works for us as a writer and reviewer. You can contact him via e-mail: [email protected]

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