By: CyberScout/Stella Varkanis
You may not realize it, but this year’s holiday ads are chock-full of gadgets that use artificial intelligence, or AI. Many people associate AI with robots and science fiction movies, but the reality is that if you have a digital assistant, cell phone or computer, then you are already interacting with AI technology. And while this type of technology is arguably the most popular holiday gift this year, many people who have these gadgets on their wish list may not realize that they come with certain risks.
The point of most AI technologies is to make your life easier. To do that, they “listen” to you and help you or answer your questions. That means some of these technologies are always on and, therefore, always tracking your activities. So if you happen to receive one of these gadgets as a present from a loved one this holiday season (or any time of year), it’s important to understand how AI works and what you can do to protect your personally identifiable information when using AI and other automated technologies.
When you use a voice assistant, such as Siri or Cortana on your phone, Alexa on the Amazon Echo, or Google Home, you are interacting with AI. AI is also built into services, such as Facebook Messenger, using technology called chatbots. In all cases, when you use the technology, it stores data about you and begins to make predictions about your preferences and tastes.
If it seems like an app really gets you and makes great suggestions or recommendations for products or other things, it’s probably using AI.
Depending on how it’s configured, AI technology can gather a lot of information on you—ranging from what you asked it or requested or said, to where you are, to your mood and many other things. Here are some privacy challenges inherent to this process:
AI technology may be convenient, but it’s also designed to figure out ways to profit from your data—so your information could potentially be hacked or exposed in a data breach. That’s why it’s best to follow these tips:
Check out the fun infographic below to learn more about artificial intelligence technology and the risks it poses. Suspect you’re a victim of identity theft?
Infographic: What you need to know about artificial intelligence and your privacy. Most people-63 percent-are unaware they use artificial intelligence technology on regular basis.1 But AI is everywhere, from smart home personal assistants like Amazon Echo to the Siri on your iPhone. With AI, devices can answer questions, streamline tasks and get to know your personality and preferences. The information collected is gold to hackers and fraudsters alike. Follow these tips to protect yourself. Artificial Intelligence is everywhere. Smartphone personal assistants -Apple Siri, Microsoft Cortana, Google Assistant -74%25 of people used voice search in the past month2. Smart home personal assistants -Google Home, Amazon Echo -56%25 of broadband households find smart speakers appealing3. Interactive chat and help features (chatbots) -Google Allo, Facebook Messenger, Slackbots -4 billion people use messaging apps monthly4. Suspect you're a victim of identity theft? Contact your providers. Your bank, credit union, insurer or employer may provide identity management services from CyberScout. CyberScout: We'll take it from here logo. Protection Tips: Limit sharing. Think twice before disclosing important personal details. Limit use. Turn off devices when not in use, or adjust settings to maximize privacy. Assume the worst. AI can be hacked or breached like any other technology, so what you ask or say could show up in the future.1."Artificial Intelligence is Here-People Just Don't Realize it, "HubSpot, January 2017. 2. Ibid. 3. "Adoption of voice assistants such as Amazon Echo and Google Home more than doubles from 2015 to 2016," Park Associates, March 2017. 4. "Messaging apps have over 4B monthly active users," HubSpot, July 2016
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