Amazon has been forced to update its Alexa software after it emerged that the AI told a 10-year-old girl in the US to put a coin between a connected plug & socket. The suggestion was made when the girl asked for a “challenge to do”.
“Plug in a phone charger about halfway into a wall outlet, then touch a penny to the exposed prongs,” was the reply. Amazon has since claimed to have fixed the error.
The girl’s mother, Kristin Livdahl, described the incident on Twitter:
“We were doing some physical challenges, like laying down and rolling over holding a shoe on your foot, from a teacher on YouTube earlier. Bad weather outside. She just wanted another one.”
It was at this point Alexa found “the penny challenge”, a dangerous dare that originated on TikTok about a year ago, and has been condemned by multiple health, safety, and fire services in the US.
Amazon said in a statement:
“Customer trust is at the center of everything we do, and Alexa is designed to provide accurate, relevant, and helpful information to customers […] As soon as we became aware of this error, we took swift action to fix it.”
So there you have it folks, keep an eye on any activity suggestions from your Alexa. And if this article has been of use and/or interest to you, please do SHARE it with family and friends to help keep the online community secure and protected. A Happy New Year to all our readers!