How to Make Sure Google Chrome Isn't Spying on You via Your Microphone

There's a simple way to make sure you're safe in front of your own computer

By on January 23rd, 2014 10:08 GMT

It was revealed that Google left a big security issue in Chrome after introducing the speech recognition feature several months ago.

If you happen to visit a malicious site and give it permission to listen in to your voice looking for certain keywords so that you can perform various tasks, you’re most likely in trouble.

Such sites, developer Tal Ater discovered, can continue listening in even after the microphone was supposedly turned off and the tab closed. This, as you’d expect, is a huge problem if you often use the speech recognition feature.

However, there’s a very easy way to make sure that you’re not being spied on. And I’m not just talking about not using the feature at all.

Open Chrome, go to Settings, scroll down and choose Show advanced settings. From there, go to the Privacy section and click the Content Settings button.

Once the new page appears, go to Media. From there, you can completely deny access to sites to your camera and microphone if you want to be completely done with this section.

The alternative is to continue having Chrome ask you every time a site requires access to the webcam and microphone. Clicking on the Manage exceptions box allows you to see exactly what sites are allowed to listen in.

It’s possible to delete them or modify their settings, thus giving you full control over which sites get access to your data.

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