Google has recently unveiled its Google Home Mini speakers that have landed into trouble, before even hitting the sales shelves. According to Artem Russakovskii, his Google Home Mini review unit had been incessantly recording everything happing in surrounding and sharing that data with Google.
Bug Turned Google Home Mini Into A Surveillance
The company was quick respond to issue and has already deployed an update to stop vulnerability.
The vulnerability was found in three touch sensors on top of the device. Google’s software update for Home Mini has temporary disabled these sensors. The Smart Speakers like Home Mini are made to respond warm words like “Hey Google,” and “Ok Google.” Once these commands are given, the microphone on device records what come after then and transfer information to cloud for answering your queries. The users can hit the button on top and ask any question.
Touch panel is to blame
According to Russakovskii, the review unit was malfunctioning on touch sensor level. It is also assumed that the user is holding the top device to ask a question, and hence it randomly active and recorded everything going around.
The most alarming part is it doesn’t make noise while recording instead it did blick lights when recording sounds.
As we mentioned earlier, Google was quick to take up the matter and pushed an update to fix the issue. Google has made alterations to the software so that the touch panel won’t activate the Assistant functions. It will only respond to the trigger words now.
Here’s the statement Google issued:
“We learned of an issue impacting a small number of Google Home Mini devices that could cause the touch mechanism to behave incorrectly. We rolled out an update on October 7 to mitigate the issue. If you’re still having issues, please feel free to contact Google Support at 1-855-971-9121 to get a replacement Google Home Mini.”
A Google spokesperson stating that the touch panel on top of the device has been permanently disabled. Here’s the complete statement:
We take user privacy and product quality concerns very seriously. Although we only received a few reports of this issue, we want people to have complete peace of mind while using Google Home Mini.
We have made the decision to permanently remove all top touch functionality on the Google Home Mini. As before, the best way to control and activate Google Home Mini is through voice, by saying “Ok Google” or “Hey Google,” which is already how most people engage with our Google Home products. You can still adjust the volume by using the touch control on the side of the device.”
What do you think was it a glitch or an intention of the company to get data?