[SMART HOME] Amazon Echo’s records could be used in a murder investigation

Amazon Echo’s records may hold interesting information when processing criminal cases in the United States. On November 9, 2018, a New Hampshire judge asked Amazon to provide him with data from an Echo speaker, located in a house where a double murder took place in 2017. The prosecutor believes that this speaker could have recorded evidence during the murder. If these recordings exist, they would provide a better understanding of how the facts unfolded. Amazon has indicated that it would “not disclose user information” without an official request from the US courts. Moreover, the ability of Amazon Echo’s speakers to provide relevant recordings in this type of case remains very uncertain: it would theoretically be necessary for one of the protagonists to have spoken one of the words that could activate the speaker. It will be recalled that a similar dispute had already occurred between Apple and the FBI. In 2016, the American courts asked Apple to unlock the iPhone of one of the perpetrators of the attack in San Bernardino, California. Apple has always refused: bypassing an iPhone’s security device would weakened the security of all its customers – and thus exposing their personal data at risk.