Amazon's Echo Dot Kids Edition is illegally recording your children, 19 privacy advocates warn

AmazonAmazon Echo Dot Kids Edition is a smart speaker that responds to voice commands using Alexa.



  • Consumer advocates and privacy groups are filing a complaint with the FTC alleging that Amazon is illegally collecting voice recording and personal information via its Echo Dot Kids Edition device.
  • The complaint said recordings are stored in the cloud indefinitely unless parents actively delete them. Removing these soundbites is not as straightforward as it should be, it added.
  • Amazon said the device is compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act and that Amazon does not collect personal information or share audio recordings.
  • The Amazon Dot Kids Edition launched in the spring of 2018. It is a smart speaker that responds to voice commands using Alexa, its artificially intelligent personal assistant.

Privacy advocates have warned parents that Amazon’s Alexa-enabled devices aren’t only listening to what their children say, they’re also absorbing this information.

In a 96-page complaint, due to be filed with the Federal Trade Commission on Thursday, 19 consumer advocate and privacy groups alleged that Amazon is illegally collecting voice recording and personal information via its Echo Dot Kids Edition device.

The Amazon Dot Kids Edition launched in the spring of 2018. It is a smart speaker that responds to voice commands using Alexa, its artificially intelligent personal assistant, and functions in the same way as the standard Echo device.

Echo Dot Kids EditionAvery Hartmans/Business InsiderThis device launched in April 2018.

In the complaint, they alleged that kids’ recordings are stored in the cloud indefinitely unless their parent actively deletes them. Removing these soundbites is also not as straightforward as it should be, they added.

Parents would need to either listen to every recording to find out what information has been collected or contact customers services to have the child’s entire profile deleted. In doing this, the advocates found that this also disables the features that made the product suitable for kids, including the parental controls.


Read more:
Amazon’s Alexa keeps recordings of your voice – here’s how to listen to them

These recordings could provide valuable insight into how users “learn, play, and acquire new information,” the complaint said and this is data that Amazon could use to develop new products in the future.

In a statement sent to Business Insider, an Amazon spokeswoman said the device is compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. She also stressed that Amazon does not collect personal information or share audio recordings.

Amazon has been called out by customers in the past over privacy concerns with its Alexa devices. Some users have even found that their personal conversations had been recorded and then forwarded on to friends in error.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.