Technology giant Google has recently obtained patents to invent smart-home products that are capable of spying on users. The goal of the products is to learn more about us so they can can solicit us with advertisements that fit our lifestyle, PJ Media reported.
The new patents go beyond Google's current "Alexa" technology. It includes having sensors and cameras installed throughout a home so it's able to track what residents are doing.
"They describe how the cameras can even recognize the image of a movie star’s image on a resident’s t-shirt, connect it to the person’s browsing history, and send the person an ad for a new movie the star is in," PJ Media reported.
Here's what one of their patents said (emphasis mine):
By way of example, the high-power processor and the low-power processor may detect when a location (e.g., a house or room) is occupied (i.e., includes a presence of a human), up to and including whether it is occupied by a specific person or is occupied by a specific number of people (e.g., relative to one or more thresholds). In one embodiment, this detection can occur, e.g., by analyzing microphone signals, detecting user movements (e.g., in front of a device), detecting openings and closings of doors or garage doors, detecting wireless signals, detecting an internet protocol (IP) address of a received signal, detecting operation of one or more devices within a time window, or the like. Moreover, the high-power processor and the low-power processor may include image recognition technology to identify particular occupants or objects.
What's even more shocking? Google has another patent. This one focuses on the running of a household.
From The Guardian:
A second patent proposes a smart-home system that would help run the household, using sensors and cameras to restrict kids’ behavior. Parents could program a device to note if it overhears 'foul language' from children, scan internet usage for mature or objectionable content, or use 'occupancy sensors' to determine if certain areas of the house are accessed while they’re gone— for example, the liquor cabinet. The system could be set to 'change a smart lighting system color to red and flash the lights' as a warning to children or even power off lights and devices if they’re grounded.
As if our privacy wasn't a concern before. Just wait until these patents become a reality.