Here's the thing. Alexa (and all of her Artificial Intelligence friends) is not a perfect science. Not yet, anyway.

A woman in Portland, Oregon is swearing off the Amazon device, claiming it recorded her private conversation with her husband and sent it to one of her contacts. She's not wrong, technically.

An engineer at Amazon explained what happened to TV station KIRO.

“Echo woke up due to a word in background conversation sounding like 'Alexa.' Then, the subsequent conversation was heard as a “send message” request. At which point, Alexa said out loud 'To whom?' At which point, the background conversation was interpreted as a name in the customer’s contact list. Alexa then asked out loud, '[contact name], right?' Alexa then interpreted background conversation as 'right.' As unlikely as this string of events is, we are evaluating options to make this case even less likely.”

Here's a little advice from a longtime fan of Alexa. The scenario outlined above is extremely unlikely -- but if a conversation is that sensitive and you really feel the need for absolute privacy, mute the device. Also, turn the device up loud enough so you can hear its prompts. Finally, if you're seriously concerned that you may accidentally send a message to one of your contacts, turn off the device's calling capabilities.

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