If you ever thought technology like Amazon Echo and Ring cameras were invasive, the retail giant has a new tactic in store. A $1.7 billion deal with iRobot Corp, the makers of Roomba vacuums, will allow the company to figure out the layout of your house.
Considering Amazon’s investment into smart home devices, it’s no wonder they’re aiming to figure out how you utilize the tech in your home. Not to mention what furniture you have where, and how many square feet your house is. That’ll give the tech giant an idea for how wealthy you are, whether or not you have kids (with all those toys on the floor), and how much furniture you have. Since the company is an online retailer, it’s likely they’ll use the information they collect to advertise and market specific products tailored to what they believe you need.
There’s no doubt that smart home technology is useful in the day-to-day. Voice operated lights, answers to questions via Google Home, or catching porch pirates in action, there’s something to be said for having the internet at your fingertips. But with the rapid advancement of these devices comes mysterious and often unclear privacy policies. Who collects the data, why, and for what purpose? How do these large companies use the information they gather?
While you might be one of the small percentage of individuals who reads through a company’s Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policies completely, the average consumer does not. And even so, there can be loopholes and exceptions to the rules that aren’t obvious upon first glance.
It’s extremely important to weigh the pros and cons when it comes to handing out your personal information to large corporations. Data breaches aren’t uncommon amongst high-profile companies, so be careful what you share when signing up for new services or, in this case, when you buy a new vacuum cleaner.
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