Yes your Smart TV get spy on you with its camera and microphone. Do you trust your Smart TV defaults- you should not. Internet devices have a huge potential of being hacked, can pervade your privacy, When you install burglar alarms, cctv devices etc., at your home, this acts like a door keeper, it hinders entrance but may not stop some-one from entering your property and robbing you off your personal items.

So protecting yourself as much as possible, making it more difficult to steal personal information, robbing you of your privacy, personal information your identification to be used for eg advertising purposes, sold to crims, used for political reasons and much worse we need to put obstacles in the way

Because your Smart TV is connected to your internet like other devices in your home- TV and mobile phone. Gaming devices, laptops, computers, camera’s,  this is a huge data base collection that is potential to risk of hacking because they are all connected to the internet as is your Smart TV manufacturers, App developers have this ability therefore we need to do all we can to protect those that live in our home and those that  visit.

Know what features your Smart TV has. Do a basic internet search of your TVs Model Number and Make. Look up the words ‘microphone’ and ‘camera’ and ‘privacy’. Do NOT depend on manufacturers default settings. If you can change passwords on your Smart TV do so. . Learn how to turn the microphone and camera off.

Microphones, Camera’s and ‘collection of ‘personal information’. If you can’t turn them off them this is a potential risk in buying this model. If you cannot turn off the camera, simply put black tape over the camera eye. And check the ability of the manufacturer to update your device with security patches.

Data misuse is a significantly a risk for Smart TV owners. App purchasing, advertising, surveys etc., such as Netflis, You Tube harvest huge amounts of data. Your data could end up in cyber crim hands, malicious appliances can potentially take control of your Smart TV, just like other ‘Smart’ devices that are connected to the internet.

Can capture passwords, personal data. Data can be sold to 2nd, 3rd, 4th even 5th parties, this is a great revenue in the hands of cyber crims. Can interfere with politics, economic status, your Smart TV can be used to target you, your family and those that visit your home

2015 Samsung landed in hot water regarding a worded statement on monitors and living room conversations, they acted extremely quickly to reword the statement. There was an outcry a fear that the public were being monitored. Samsung was caught spying listening to private conversations using camera’s and microphones monitoring people in their private homes

References are made to devices that are marketed with ‘features’ to make the users life easier. ‘Wake Word’ is sent back to the manufacturers so then they can train their speech algorithms.  Some Smart TV’s have ‘ gesture control’ inputs, analysing facial expressions, what you enjoy and don’t enjoy watching. (Tells a lot about a person, the way they feel and think)

Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) uses different analytical techniques by matching running video’s and audio to an extensive base whilst usually an ‘Opt-in ‘ feature what statistics show that most uses choose to use  ACR.  Gaming, DVD, TV, Streaming or custom camera feeds can be captured as an input.  ACR can potentially play a more sinister role, create a profile of a user. In the wrong hands, leverage the profile for a myriad of functions that can be used for cyber crims. ACR is another form of ‘profiling’ where graphics, audio shown on TV are analyzed by algorithms that attempt to interpret and classify content. These classifications can be used to make inferences about the person watching the TV. This can be sold on the black market, used for target advertising, marketing, traded via data to other organizations etc.,

TV Settings>Preferences’ turn off setting labeled ‘Collect App & Over the Air Usage’ and turn off ‘Internet based adds’ in this section. For Android go to Settings>about ‘legal information’ then disable personalized adds.  For LG go to Settings>All settings> Scroll down to ‘General’, then scroll to settings ‘Live Pics’ then toggle off. Uncheck ‘Use Information’ from TV device Inputs and disable ACR. For Samsung go to Settings>Support>scroll down to ‘terms and policies’  turn off ‘viewing information services’ and ‘Voice Recognition Services

VIZIA- Go to System> Reset> Admin> viewing toggle and turn it off.

SMART TVS’ COMERA AND MICROPHONE: 1? Got to Settings> look for ‘Privacy Options’  2) Look for ‘advertising > select ‘Limit Add Tracking’ or similar. 3) Go to ‘microphone’ and ‘camera’ accessibility and turn off.  Main Menu > Click Settings> go to ‘support’ scroll down to ‘terms and policies’ and turn off ‘Voice Recognition’

Android Devices: Navigate Settings>Applications Manager>Permissions>Select and turn off the microphone. If you have a Smart TV have a closer look at your ‘privacy settings’ – Home>Settings>System>Expert Settings

Know your TV before some-one else knows you, protect your data, create a strong password for apps eg Netflix and You Tube. Consider your TV as having a voice control for trusted third parties. Your black tape over camera.

Samsung > Navigate settings. select. ‘Expert settings’, find camera and microphone options. Most Smart TVs have Mics some in the front usually one mic bottom right corner but some have two bottom left and right corner of the screen. Turn off Voice Assistant

Research  Carol Sakey  –


By Carol Sakey.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Tutorials point- How to stop your Smart TV from spying on you

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