If you own an Amazon Echo or another Alexa-enabled device, you can now tell Alexa to delete your voice recordings. While this is currently only limited to voice recordings up to one day old, it is at least a start.
Amazon Records Your Alexa Voice Commands
Amazon has been getting some bad press of late over the way it retains voice recordings. There have been claims Amazon tracks and shares voice data, and even that Amazon employees are listening into these snippets of conversation to help train the Alexa AI.
It is possible to delete these voice recordings manually through the Alexa app. Click the hamburger menu in the top-left, then Settings, then Alexa Account, followed by History. From here you can listen to your voice recordings and delete them individually.
However, Amazon is now making it even easier to delete your Alexa voice recordings.
How to Delete Your Alexa Voice Recordings
Starting today, you can delete all of your voice recordings with a voice command. Just say, “Alexa, delete everything I said today,” and your data will be deleted. This even includes you asking Alexa to delete your voice recordings.
You: Alexa, delete what I said today
SQL: is_deleted = 1
— Eniola-Oluwa (@EniolaLucas) May 29, 2019
Over the next few weeks, Alexa will learn a second trick. This one will allow you to delete your most recent voice recording. Just say, “Alexa, delete what I just said” to prompt Alexa to wipe your last command from the Amazon servers.
Unfortunately (but understandably) this is opt-in only, so you’ll have to set it up in the Alexa app first. To do so, open the app, go to Settings > Alexa Account > Alexa Privacy > Review Voice History. Then toggle “Enable Deletion By Voice”.
Alexa Is Listening, But That’s OK
There are likely to be practical reasons why Amazon is only allowing users to delete voice recordings up to a day old. However, we would like to see this extended so that users can delete data stored over a longer period, or, preferably, everything you have ever said.
Hopefully, this option to delete your voice recordings on a daily basis will embolden you to ask Alexa some funny questions. Or, if that’s not your thing, here are some fun Alexa games you can play on an Echo. Just remember to delete your commands afterwards.
Image Credit: Tony Webster/Flickr