Gaming Accessory Maker Sells "Privacy Cover" For Xbox One's Kinect 2
October 28, 2013 1:00 PM
comment(s) - last by
The Xbox One won't be able to watch you if you put a cover on it
Microsoft Corp. (
) assures that
the Xbox One
will feature "robust" privacy protections. However, given
recent accusations data sharing contracts
U.S. National Security Agency
(NSA) and other
domestic spying programs
, some are fearful that the 1080p Kinect 2 sensor in the Xbox One will
be used as a "Big Brother" device
Gaming accessory maker PDP has come along and thrown fuel on that fire. While its
USD Xbox One Kinect 2 TV mount accessory's primary purpose is ostensibly allowing you to mount the Kinect on top of your flat screen TV (versus having it sit on a nearby table or stand), it also comes with a free "privacy cover" that covers "both the RGB and IR cameras".
The plastic shroud comes in black plastic and matches the part of the stand that clips onto your TV. The TV mount package will ship on December 4, a week and a half off the Friday,
Nov. 22 launch
of the Xbox One.
To its credit, Microsoft
You are in control of what Kinect can see and hear. By design, you will determine how responsive and personalized your Xbox One is to you and your family during setup. The system will navigate you through key privacy options, like automatic or manual sign in, privacy settings, and clear notifications about how data is used. When Xbox One is on and you’re simply having a conversation in your living room, your conversation is not being recorded or uploaded.
PDP's privacy cover somewhat remedies the potential spying concerns, however, it is far from complete. After all, while it blocks the Kinect 2 from "seeing" you, Kinect 2 can still
to you with its bank of microphones. It wouldn't be a surprise to see future accessories pop up that include a full-length cover that also shrouds and insulates the microphones from room noises, as well.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Kinect is not something people want.
10/28/2013 5:54:42 PM
You do realize that an "always on microphone" doesn't mean it's sending communication data across the internet, right? In order for the NSA to record a conversation, it must be sent across a network connection. They cannot magically reach into your computer and remotely connect to the audio hardware in a computer.
I hate the idea of the NSA snooping around as much as the next guy, but these sort of claims are completely unfounded. People extrapolate things well beyond certain capabilities. Recording audio communication across the internet and phone lines is in a whole other ballpark than recording audio input that is locally processed on the computing device.
RE: Kinect is not something people want.
10/30/2013 2:58:40 AM
Wouldn't that be easy to do if the xbox one had a backdoor(on chip or in software) specifically designed for that?
I remember reading many years ago, that you cannot sell a firewall or security encryption software in the US unless you gave the master keys to the NSA.
"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton
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