iRobot Roomba J7 robotic vacuum cleaners were in the testing phase in the US. These devices are equipped with a camera on the front to improve their AI, and the data is collected and sent to ScaleAI, a company that specializes in inventorying AI-generated media files.
Everything was going well, until photos of the interiors of the testers’ houses began to appear on social networks …
Because the problem is that some of the footage clearly violated the privacy of people who greeted the famous robots, according to an MIT Technology Review investigation. Thus, a woman was photographed sitting on the toilet in shorts to the middle of the thigh. Other images show scenes of everyday life and show kitchens, living rooms, or people, including underage children.
The American media explained that this data was shared in private groups on social networks, Facebook, Discord and others by these independent workers located in Venezuela, responsible for their use.
The iRobot brand reacted to the scandal. He “severed ties with the service provider who leaked the images and is actively investigating the matter,” his manager Colin Angle said. The company said the recording was “distributed in violation of a written non-disclosure agreement.”
However, to protect itself, the company clarified that the people “spyed on” were actually “collectors and employees” who signed contracts agreeing to record the images. Some people must have been very surprised by the result. “I had no idea that the data was going abroad,” a test participant for the device explained to the American Review.