Post by Eorl @ 12:20pm 02/11/13 | 8 Comments
Microsoft newest technology addition to their next-gen console, the Kinect 2.0 camera, has been welcomed with open arms by technology enthusiast but also deemed a privacy concern by those weary of the all-seeing-eye. To help alleviate the concerns, Microsoft has revealed a quite large blog post to help set records straight once and for all on the growing privacy concerns.
For those wondering what exactly Kinect captures on signing in, under the section labelled ‘Kinect’, Microsoft writes, “The camera can be used to sign you in. To do so, it measures distances between key points on your face to create a numeric value that represents only you. No one could look at the numbers and know they represent you. This authentication information stays on the console and is not shared with anyone.”
Those using the camera to with certain games and apps will find that their skeletal movements are mapped to help track estimates for exercise stats and an option will be given to the player on whether to share said data.
According to Microsoft, "some game titles may take advantage of a new Xbox capability called expressions." This feature allows you to use your defined facial expressions to control or influence a game, a feature that Microsoft has been touting since the original reveal of the Xbox One. "This data does not identify you, stays on the console and is destroyed once your session ends," the blog post states.
Personal information such as profiles and payment details were also covered in the blog post, stating that "except as described in this privacy statement, we won’t disclose your personal information to a third party without your consent.”
Oddly Microsoft does reveal that you shouldn't expect any level of privacy when using Kinect's microphone (thanks Denthor), stating that you "should not expect any level of privacy concerning your use of the live communication features such as voice chat, video and communications in live-hosted gameplay sessions offered through the Services." Microsoft does however state that it may monitor the communication, but only "to the extent permitted by law, but we cannot monitor the entire Service and make no attempt to do so."
For those worried about being targeted by specific advertising created from data capture, Microsoft explains, “You may opt out of receiving targeted ads from Microsoft Advertising by visiting our opt-out page.”
With the world rapidly progressing into a more digital future defined by our smartphones and computers, is the above a concern to you? Let us know in the comments below on your thoughts about the new capture software.