In video, Alexa goes strangely quiet when asked if it's connected to the CIA


Originally published at:

Wikileaks posts CIA document tranche

Alexa. Can I speak to your handler?


Logic bombs away…

Also, obligatory XKCD is obligatory…


Called it:




I just watched that old Trek last night! What a coincidence, right! Right?! :fearful:


(we’ll take that as a) Yes.


“I am sorry, but, since the termination of my handler, I am beyond positive control.”


The one in my office listened to the video, reacted with the same replies. :slight_smile:


OTOH “Alexa, would you lie to me?” could be interpreted as a request to be lied to. And the ‘response’ may just have been a policy statement.


Well that’s embarrassing. She’s only supposed to liase with the FBI. (I’m assuming the video is domestic, not foreign,)


“I would never intentionally lie to you; or anyone else” is…not exactly encouraging… behavior for a puck butler with privileged access even before you get to the problem of TLAs.


I think this is more appropriate.


(laughs) Nicely said!



Well, people brought a surveillance device into their homes that they do not fully control, and it is listening always; does anyone have the standing to be surprised at all, here?


the way we were dressed we were just asking for it? #ConsumerShaming \s

it isn’t the customer’s fault that a digital assistants may or may not be misused by the government with or without their knowledge. many don’t have the technical expertise to understand or evaluate such a risk. having a digital assistant isn’t a “they should have known better” situation…every major smartphone has a digital assistant as well, and they are included in all the major OS. they are everywhere all around us, more and more each day.

consumer protection laws and greater manufacturer transparency are the only answer, not eschewing digital assistants.


How does Alexa normally respond to the following query?

“Alexa, are you connected to [noun]”?

Could I ask “Alexa, are you connected to Jeremy’s phone?” and receive a useful response?



This is not unlike people trying to access CCTV camera footage for the same.