If Amazon’s Alexa is part of your life, or if you are using Ring, this article is for you.
Here’s the bottom line: Disable Amazon Sidewalk.
Here’s more information:
On June 8th, Amazon assumed that you have no issues with letting them do this:
“Create a low-bandwidth network with the help of Sidewalk Bridge devices including select Echo and Ring devices. These Bridge devices share a small portion of your internet bandwidth which is pooled together to provide these services to you and your neighbors. When more neighbors participate, the network becomes even stronger.”
- Unless you disable Amazon Sidewalk by choosing to opt OUT,
- You are now automatically opting IN to sharing your bandwidth (and, potentially, your DATA) with your neighbors.
Amazon has peppered its website with promises to be serious about security. They attempt to allay our concerns by touting their commitment to data protection: privacy and security protocols are “built in” to Sidewalk, Amazon says, to “protect users.”
We are not convinced. We’re not trying to be scaremongers, we just want to call a spade a spade here.
Consider just a smattering of recent headlines:
- In December, a class action lawsuit against Amazon compiled terrible examples of customers whose Ring cameras had turned against them.
- In February, whistleblower employees claimed they were forced to leave after flagging problems with data security and compliance.
- In June, we heard about 20 million user logins from Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and eBay which had been hacked over a 2-year span.
- We could go on . . . .
The summary is simply this: Amazon and other tech giants have horrific track records regarding data security. We don’t trust them to do this right.