HOUSTON – If you have an Amazon device in your home, anything from an Alexa to an Echo, you can opt out of an experiment that could put your privacy at risk.
Amazon Sidewalk will be a shared network that is supposed to help customer devices work better, both in and around your home, like outside lighting that may be wi-fi enabled. If you lose connectivity your device would just switch to a neighbor’s signal so the service wouldn’t be disrupted. When you turn on a new device, it will ask you if you want to join the Amazon Sidewalk network but all of the Amazon devices you own now will automatically be included on June 8, unless you opt out.
How will Amazon Sidewalk work?
Your Amazon Alexa, Echo, Ring doorbell, security cameras and Tile trackers will automatically enroll in the sidewalk system on June 8.
Online, Amazon explains, “As a crowdsourced, community benefit, Amazon Sidewalk is only as powerful as the trust our customers place in us to safeguard customer data.”
Amazon says the total monthly data that would be used by Sidewalk enabled-devices is capped at 500 MB, about what it takes to stream 10 minutes of high-definition video.
How do you opt out?
If you don’t want your Amazon devices to share a slice of your internet, this is how you opt out:
- Open the Alexa app.
- Open “More.”
- Select “Settings.”
- Select “Account Settings.”
- Select “Amazon Sidewalk.”
- Disable “Amazon Sidewalk.”
If you don’t already have the Alexa app, you will have to install it just to turn Amazon Sidewalk off. You can’t opt out from your Amazon account online.