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Is My TV Watching Me?

In this űber-connected world, technology’s conveniences lull many of us into a state of denial about its dangerous tradeoffs. This story from HD Guru stopped us in our tracks.

The new 2012 Samsung smart TV comes with the following features not offered (yet) by its competitors: “Internally wired HD camera, twin microphones, face tracking and speech recognition. While these features give you unprecedented control over an HDTV, the devices themselves, more similar than ever to a personal computer, may allow hackers or even Samsung to see and hear you and your family, and collect extremely personal data.”

According to the article, Samsung has yet to respond satisfactorily to the reporter’s queries about data collection and the personal privacy of consumers.

If it’s true, as the article says, that the new technology on the Samsung TVs is difficult for customers to disable, Samsung should take immediate action on the PR front:

1)      Act swiftly to publicly acknowledge the concerns brought up in this article

2)      Launch an informative campaign that fully explains the use of these devices and why customers needn’t worry about privacy invasion

3)      If there is real potential for privacy breaches, Samsung should consider recalling the TVs and fix them to allay concerns

Otherwise, spooked consumers will stay away in droves and the door will swing wide open for competitors to develop and tout the impermeability of their own smart TVs.

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