Bose Home Speaker

Bose Home Speaker

Bose
Wi-Fi Bluetooth

Review date: Nov. 8, 2021

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Mozilla says

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People voted: Very creepy

Bose is known for it's pricey, premium headphones and speakers. With their smart home speaker line -- which includes everything from a portable smart speaker to a soundbar for your TV , to a blocky speaker with a LCD display -- users get all the expensive Bose sound with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant built-in. Ask questions or make commands and an 8-microphone array will pick up your words. Tap that microphone button to turn off those snoopy speakers whenever you want some privacy. Group multiple speakers together to your music all synced up. And with Alexa (but not Google) you can make or take calls to anyone in your contact list or or Bose smart products or Amazon Echo products. Just know, you'll be sharing your some of your data with Amazon and Google when you ask your speaker all those weird questions.

What could happen if something goes wrong?

A few years back Bose came under fire when it was alleged they were secretly collecting personal information about users through the Bose app. Bose fought the class action lawsuit based on these allegations. And early in 2021, Bose made a good change when they stopped requiring users to create an account to use the Bose Music app that controls their headphones and speakers. Yay for progress!

Bose does say it may use or share de-identified personal data for any purpose they choose, without limitation. This use of anonymized data is generally OK, although many privacy researchers will point out it is relatively easy to de-anonymize such data. Also, if you choose to use Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant with this smart speaker, know that Google and Amazon will collect data on the voice requests you make. What’s the worst that could happen with the fancy smart speaker? Well, hopefully not too much, we hope.

Tips to protect yourself

- If you use Alexa or Google Assistant, set up the respective privacy settings.

mobile Privacy Security A.I.

Can it snoop on me? information

Camera

Device: No

App: No

Microphone

Device: Yes

App: No

Tracks location

Device: No

App: Yes

What can be used to sign up?

What data does the company collect?

How does the company use this data?

Bose may receive information about you from other sources, such as business partners, marketers, researchers, analysts, social network services, and other parties. Bose may use third-party analytics services on their Services (e.g., Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics).

How can you control your data?

Bose will delete or de-identify information when it is no longer needed to fulfill these purposes, unless a longer retention period is required to comply with applicable laws.

What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?

Average

Bose suffered a ransomware attack in March 2021, it leaked employee and financial data, but no consumer-related data.

Can this product be used offline?

Can’t Determine

User-friendly privacy information?

Yes

The privacy policy is detailed on all aspects we are interested in.

Links to privacy information

Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards? information

Yes

Encryption

Yes

Uses encryption in transit and at rest.

Strong password

Yes

Security updates

Yes

Manages vulnerabilities

Yes

Privacy policy

Yes

Does the product use AI? information

Yes

Is this AI untrustworthy?

Can’t Determine

What kind of decisions does the AI make about you or for you?

You can connect the speaker to Alexa or Google Assistant, if you wish, for voice recognition.

Is the company transparent about how the AI works?

N/A

Does the user have control over the AI features?

Yes


News

Bose no longer requires you to make an account just to use its app
The Verge
Recent Bose headphones and earbuds have come with a somewhat frustrating requirement: to use the accompanying Bose Music app, you needed to create an account.
Bose Reveals Data Breach After Ransomware Attack
Softpedia News
Bose was hit by a sophisticated ransomware attack in March that led to unlawful access to the personal data of current and former employees.
Bose accused of spying on users, illegal wiretapping via Bose Connect app
CSOnline
A lawsuit alleges the Bose Connect app secretly intercepts and shares what you listen to.
Judge tosses wiretapping charges from class action vs Bose over claims it used an app to eavesdrop on users' listening choices
Cook County Record
A federal judge lopped off much of an eavesdropping class action against Bose Corp., in which the electronics maker was accused of surreptitiously collecting data on the listening habits of those using its bluetooth headphones.
Bose Added to List of High-Profile Companies Who Have Suffered Ransomware Attack
Arent Fox
Bose, a consumer electronics company best known for its audio equipment, is one of the latest major corporations to see its networks infiltrated and stored data accessed by malicious intruders.

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