Zoom, Skype and other services monitor users even when the microphone is turned off
Most of the services do not transmit all the information all the time, but collect data
Scientists from the Universities of Wisconsin and Chicago found that many popular video conferencing services, including Zoom, Skype, Google Meet and Discord, continue to record audio even if the user turns off the microphone in the interface of these applications.
The Mute button in most cases only turns off the sound broadcast to the interlocutors, but does not interrupt the collection of data from the application itself. Most of the services do not transmit all the information all the time, but collect data only for a while after the microphone is turned off.
According to the researchers, a partial recording is enough to understand what a person is doing. With the help of the neural network and the collected audio recordings, it was possible to determine with 82% accuracy that the user, for example, is eating, cleaning, or watching a video.