Amazon Alexa will soon allow deepfaking with a deceased person


from Claus Ludewig
At the Remars conference, Amazon announced a feature for Alexa that enables deepfakes. For example, a deceased grandmother could read a bedtime story via an Alexa device.

Amazon has been offering the virtual assistant called Alexa since 2014. In addition to the smart speakers from the Echo series with microphones, there are also devices with a display that have the digital assistant. At the Remars conference, Amazon announced a new feature that can record short audio clips. Leave afterwards these pieces of conversation can be converted into audio output. For example, a deepfake with the voice of a deceased person is possible.

Bedtime story from the afterlife

As Senior Vice President and Head Scientist at Amazon, Rohit Prasad, explains, this feature makes it possible for a deceased grandmother, for example, to read a bedtime story via Alexa. In order to be able to use the function, an Alexa device needs a voice recording of the person with a length of one minute. It is still unclear when the new feature will be available for all Alexa owners.

All Alexa devices have had enhanced privacy options for some time. In this way, voice recordings can be automatically deleted immediately after Alexa has implemented the voice command. Provided that the user has made the appropriate setting in the Alexa data protection settings. In addition, text transcripts of Alexa requests can be viewed and deleted online at any time in the Alexa data protection portal. Amazon promises to automatically delete text transcripts of voice requests after 30 days. If you want, you can also manually delete your voice recordings at any time with the voice command “Alexa, delete everything I said”.

Also worth reading: Amazon Echo in the everyday test: what can the devices with Alexa do?

Amazon Alexa and Deepfake collection:

  • At the Remars conference, Amazon announced a new feature to create deepfakes with Alexa devices.
  • In this way, short audio clips can be recorded, which can then be converted into audio output. For example, a deceased grandmother could read a bedtime story via an Alexa device.
  • An Amazon Echo requires a voice recording with a length of one minute. It is still unclear when the new feature will be available for all Alexa owners.
  • However, if you wish, you can also delete voice recordings manually at any time. All text transcripts of Alexa requests can be viewed and deleted online at any time in the Alexa privacy portal.

Source: Techcrunch