According to Privacy Online News, a recent update in Google Chrome (and its derivatives, like Chromium), downloaded and installed without notice Ok Google, effectively monitoring every conversation you have near your computer.
Obviously, your own computer isn’t the one to analyze the actual search command. Google’s servers do. Which means that your computer had been stealth configured to send what was being said in your room to somebody else, to a private company in another country, without your consent or knowledge, an audio transmission triggered by… an unknown and unverifiable set of conditions.
Google had two responses to this. The first was to introduce a practically-undocumented switch to opt out of this behavior, which is not a fix: the default install will still wiretap your room without your consent, unless you opt out, and more importantly, know that you need to opt out, which is nowhere a reasonable requirement. But the second was more of an official statement following technical discussions on Hacker News and other places.
|"A lot of people don't understand what 'public' really means."|
|"The ultimate goal of the NSA is total population control"|
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|"It’s increasingly hard to opt-out of online tracking."|
|“What if energy generation was a consumer electronic you could order off Amazon?”|
|"There’s a galactic gold rush brewing."|
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|"An unabashed love letter to the 1982 motion picture Blade Runner."|
|"A helpful guide created by an unqualified individual."|
|"You only need about 100 miles by 100 miles of solar panels to power the entire United States."|
|"A real-time surveillance machine that has been developed for online advertising is rapidly expanding into other fields."|
|“Robots should be fitted with an 'ethical black box' to keep track of their decisions.”|
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