I don’t know how to handle this Science question and need guidance.
As part of reviewing Red Clay’s annual report, it is important to highlight the company’s inherent risks that may potentially exist if third party equipment that is recommended and installed by our company infringes on the privacy of residential clients. This risk serves not only to negatively affect our residential clientele but the corporation as well. Specifically, the Red Clay Corporation can be impacted financially, legally, and reputationally if not vetted appropriately. Hence, it is paramount that a meticulous amount of detail is used in order to ensure customers do not experience this loss of privacy. Unquestionably, the current and future legacy of this company depends on it.
In order to truly understand the potential risks that exist, one must first understand how these voice assistants can control smart home devices. Voice assistants can be used to turn lights off, open doors, and even control appliances. In simplified terms, a voice assistant smart home technology works by combining a voice recognition system and music speaker to perform a specific interaction (Wueest, 2017).
Although these voice assistant smart home technologies prove to provide added convenience, there are several risks to privacy that exist to the user. Firstly, voice assistant technologies are always listening even when the user may be unaware. It was recently determined that a Google Home Mini was making recordings even when the user wasn’t interacting with the device (Wueest, 2017). Secondly, voice assistant technologies allow for anyone within a specific distance to interact with their device regardless of who it is (Wueest, 2017). Therefore, an adversary could gain access to an individual’s calendar and contacts information for further exploitation purposes (Wueest, 2017). Thirdly, voice assistant technologies make it extremely easy to accidently trigger the device (Wueest, 2017). By using specific sound patterns, an adversary can easily purchase items unbeknownst to the user (Wueest, 2017). Fourthly, voice assistant smart home technologies utilize the encryption of the respective company to send the information to the back end servers (Wuuest, 2017). Therefore, if the company has weak encryption practices, the more likely the information will be compromised. In general, smart devices pose privacy risk to its user by recording other sources of private information as well such as “location, displacement, movement, sound frequency, temperature, pressure, humidity, electric voltage level, camera images, color and or chemical composition” in order to function (Algemeen, 2018)
Regardless of what type of voice assistant smart home technology that is used, individuals legally have expectations to privacy according to the constitution. Therefore, Red Clay Corporation should recognize and understand that there are implications if not adequately provided. According to the APEC Privacy Framework of 2004 that generally mirrors the OECD guidelines, a company is responsible for preventing harm by first recognizing an individual’s legitimate expectation to privacy (Swire & Ahmad, 2012). Additionally, this framework also states that a corporation is legally responsible for ensuring the prevention and misuse of information, and ensuring measures are in place to ensure the appropriate collection, use, and transfer of all associated personal information (Swire & Ahmad, 2012).
In addition to the Red Clay Corporation being potentially held legally responsible, an organization can also suffer from the “administrative burden, remediation costs, financial losses, loss of public reputation and public trust” as well (DPCLD, n.d.). Even if the company were able to move forward by implementing measures and actions afterward, it is already too late. From a reputation and client trust perspective, users will feel that the corporation does not take seriously their basic civil rights and liberties. Now more than ever an organization relies on the digital footprint of its customer base. If Red Clay Corporation does not take preventative measures now, then the board members and shareholders could potentially suffer so badly that the company will never be able to recover.
As the compromise of attacks increase and the privacy of individuals are threatened even more, it is now more important than ever for organizations to ensure that appropriate measures are in place to ensure no data loss occurs. Security should be implemented as part of the initial phasing of an organization is developed, not an afterthought. This not only guarantees success for the company, but showcases to its users how important the organization considers their clientele’s liberties. Technology will continue to change, but with a better understanding of privacy and corporate liability Red Clay Corporation will continue to thrive.
Algemeen. (2018). How do smart devices work: sensors, IoT, Big Data and AI. Retrieved from https://3bplus.nl/how-do-smart-devices-work-sensors-iot-big-data-and-ai/
DPCLD. (n.d.). Privacy. Retrieved from https://dpcld.defense.gov/Privacy/About-the-Office/FAQs/#3
Smart Cover. (2016). Smart Technology. Retrieved from https://smart-cover.co.uk/?_ga=2.265747279.1916479101.1579032895-1824221889.1579032895
Swire, P. P., & Ahmad, K. (2012). U.S. private-sector privacy: Law and practice for information privacy professionals. Retrieved from https://iapp.org/store/books/a191a000001KOaJAAW/
Wueest, C. (2017). Everything You Need To Know About The Security Of Voice-Activated Smart Speakers. Retrieved from https://www.symantec.com/blogs/threat-intelligence/security-voice-activated-smart-speakers