Mon. Nov 18th, 2019

Research shows that smart TV is a data collection machine

1 min read

Research at Princeton University shows that connected smart TVs load a large number of tracking programs. If you use devices like Roku or Amazon Fire, there are many companies that can build a relatively comprehensive picture of what you are watching. Arvind Narayanan, an associate professor of computer science at Princeton, and colleagues developed a robotic program that automatically installed thousands of channels on Roku and Amazon Fire. It then simulates human behavior to browse and watch videos, and it tracks behind-the-scenes data collection as it plays.

“Roku”by JeepersMedia is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Information such as device type, city, etc. is not unique to the user, but the device serial number, Wi-Fi, and advertising ID can be tracked to the individual. Some channels even send unencrypted email addresses and video titles to the tracker.

The study found trackers on 69% of Roku channels and 89% of Amazon Fire channels, many of which are well-known companies such as Google. 89% of Roku channels have discovered Google’s advertising service, DoubleClick.

Via: theverge