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AI / Alexa / Amazon

Alexa Tip: Limiting the Privacy Boundary for the Drop-in Feature

In preparation for the Amazon Show, Amazon’s first Alexa device with a screen, the company has delivered a new feature called “Drop In.”

The Drop In feature is slightly different than the ability to “call” device-to-device which was also added recently. Drop In allows an Alexa owner to simply open up an audio and video (video for the Amazon Show) connection between devices. The person on the other end isn’t required to “answer” a Drop In call like is required for the device-to-device calling. Configured incorrectly, this setting could have serious privacy implications. By default, you have to allow specific contacts the ability to Drop In to your devices. You do this by going into the contact record in the Alexa app on your smartphone to enable Drop In for that person.

However, there’s also one additional setting that has recently been added that customers can use to quickly confine the Drop In feature to just those devices within the family. In the settings for each Drop In- compatible device (right now only the Show, the Echo, and the Dot) you can limit the Drop In feature for just those devices linked to your Amazon account, i.e., “Only my household”


(tap or click for a larger view)

One good example of why someone might use this is for parents to check in on a baby in the nursery. This option is set per device.


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A community professional, keynoter, and evangelist who has driven social media and marketing strategies, editorial successes, delivered customer successes and built some of the largest and longest-running online communities. Rod has created, managed and grown small, medium, and mega-sized conferences; run entire editorial teams to deliver record traffic and market leadership; as product manager, directed the success of hundreds of product releases; supported sales and marketing to ensure customer success; developed, run and sold businesses; written thousands of technical articles, white papers, case studies, and technical documentation; hosted and delivered hundreds of attendance shattering webinars and virtual tradeshows; and delivered keynote speeches and sessions at a wide variety of events including conferences, webinars, events, and user groups.

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