Things that caught our eye

We know that Big Brother is watching us. But did you know he was listening too?

14 Oct , 2014  | by:

According to the Guardian UK governments are already widely using “voiceprint” ID technology to identify people via their speech. A survey by the Associated Press showed that over 65 million voiceprints have already been saved by governments and companies to date. And the numbers are rising.

[Jay Stanley] added that use of voiceprints by companies to counter fraud had its benefits, but that it came with costs.

Is this another step towards mass surveillance? What does this mean for our privacy rights? Where do we draw the line when it comes to government duties? And what about our right to free speech? Can we no longer exercise it anonymously?

Several phone services rely on guaranteeing privacy to callers – crime hotlines run by police, counselling services, and numbers that people who have suffered domestic violence or other abuse are encouraged to call in the knowledge that their identities will not be compromised, for instance.

For companies “voiceprint” means more customer insight and less effort to gain the information their marketing department needs. But Stanley quite rightly says:

Biometrics are never 100% accurate [and] Are people going to be blacklisted by government institutions because their voice is mistaken for that of a fraudster?

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