Is Google Chrome eavesdropping on you?

A glitch in the browser leaves users open to hackers listening in, and the company has yet to release a fix.

By InvestorPlace Jan 24, 2014 1:46PM

Businesswomen looking at laptops © LWA, Larry Williams, Blend Images, Getty ImagesBy Christopher Freeburn


Call it the latest cyber-concern. People who use Google's (GOOG) Chrome browser could be vulnerable to eavesdropping through certain websites.


An Israeli online security expert and programmer says hackers can activate voice recognition features built into Google Chrome when a user accesses voice-recognition capable websites.


Specifically, Chrome will not alert users every time a website activates voice recognition. That means the computer’s microphone could begin to pick up anything said while a Google Chrome user is browsing -- without the user knowing about it, NBCNews reports. Thus, hackers could exploit the feature to eavesdrop on Chrome users.


The expert who detected the problem warned Google about the vulnerability in September, but Google has yet to issue a fix to prevent malevolent use the feature in Google Chrome.


While the threat exists, so far, there have been no reports of misuse of voice recognition systems to eavesdrop on Google Chrome users.


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Tags: GOOG
5Comments
Jan 24, 2014 2:18PM
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I never use chrome or google search.  Don't trust that Company.
Jan 25, 2014 8:36PM
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Every device that has a microphone / internal computer can spy on you now - not just computers and smartphones - also new cars, TVs, cable boxes, game boxes, and all of your smart home devices will also spy on you.

Think I'm paranoid? - do a search for the article title "we'll spy on you through your dishwasher".


Time for benevolent hackers to help us create screens and scramblers.

Jan 24, 2014 11:35PM
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I'd be a lot more worried about the Android advertising virus but I never use any Google gives away or sells including Chrome and Google search.
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