Why & How To Delete Your Amazon Alexa History & Voice Recordings

While virtual assistants like Amazon’s Alexa are great for answering questions and assisting with tasks, there is always the fear of companies listening to the voice commands of users. Google Assistant doesn’t record commands by default, but Alexa does. Thankfully, Amazon does have ways to change the setting and delete user history to ensure privacy and security.

Amazon’s smart devices are some of the best in the market and Alexa plays a big part in their popularity. It is built-in to various Amazon products and not only answers questions and carries out tasks but also allows for communication with smart devices sold by other companies. Its versatility means that users might ask all sorts of it during the day, but they may not want a record of all their activity kept, hence why Amazon has provided options for deleting voice recordings and history.


With users mostly interacting with their smart devices via voice commands, Amazon offers a command for deleting all voice recordings. Users can simply say, ‘Alexa, delete everything I’ve said’ and the assistant will automatically delete saved voice recordings. Amazon also has a feature that can not save voice recordings or that can automatically delete them after three or 18 months. It can be enabled through the Alexa app or the Alexa privacy settings page online. To delete voice recordings on the app, simply tap ‘More’ and select ‘Settings,’ then ‘Alexa Privacy,’ and tap ‘Manage Alexa Data.’ Under ”Automatically Delete Recordings,’ select either ‘Don’t Save Recordings,’ three, or 18 months. To delete voice recordings using a browser, log in to Amazon’s website with the account linked to the Alexa smart device and hover over ‘Account & Lists.’ Scroll down and click ‘Manage Your Content and Devices,’ then click the ‘Privacy Settings’ tab. Select ‘Alexa Privacy’ and then ‘Manager Your Alexa Data.’ Finally, select either three or 18 months under ‘Automatically Delete Recordings.’

Prevent Passive Listening, Manually

For those who want increased privacy, Alexa smart devices can be toggled to not listen for voice commands. Similar to other smart devices, Alexa devices have a physical microphone switch that, when switched off, will show a red ring around Echo speakers and a red line around the screen of Echo Show models. Switching off the microphone ensures Alexa cannot listen to commands, but can still be controlled via the Alexa app or some third-party services such as Spotify. Of course, the only downside is users then need to manually enable the microphone to communicate with Alexa again.

Smart devices are bridges that will ultimately usher in more advanced virtual assistants. Some users are fine with losing a bit of privacy in order for virtual assistants to do tasks that would otherwise take longer complete. Others are wary about the loss of privacy or simply do not agree with tech companies collecting such massive amounts of personal information. However, with regards to smart devices, users remain in control because they are not a necessity like a computer or a smartphone and there are options for managing the data collected.

Source: Amazon

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Rey Abella (54 Articles Published)

Rey Abella is a tech writer based in Toronto, Canada. He is a Professional Writing graduate from York University. When he’s not writing, you can catch Rey at an MMA gym or traveling the world. You can check out more of Rey’s work at https://reycarloabella.wordpress.com/

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