You get a personalized experience of Google’s services just because you opted for it. Similarly, Google Assistant is a service that relies on your activity and input.
However, with Google Voice & Audio activity, it was not just limited to listening/recording private conversations but also having a human reviewer to access/review it when necessary; and Google admitted to the fact – makes it even more dangerous (though they justified it as part of its quality control measures).
While this is not just limited to Google’s voice assistant, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri have also been found to do the same – which is scary.
To reconsider a few things for privacy and security of its users, Google has decided to re-start its Voice and Audio Activity Program, with better solutions. It will stop listening to the conversations and would also store less about them when it activates.
Of course, the voice and audio activity programme has always been an opt-in service but with the new changes coming later this year, Google will remind the users again to ensure that its users are aware of it.
According to Google’s product manager Nino Tasca,
We’re updating our settings to highlight that when you turn on VAA, human reviewers may listen to your audio snippets to help improve speech technology.
He also added:
If you’re an existing Assistant user, you’ll have the option to review your VAA setting and confirm your preference before any human review process resumes. We won’t include your audio in the human review process unless you’ve re-confirmed your VAA setting as ‘on’.