Amazon’s AI assistant Alexa throws ‘her own party,’ incites authorities
Amazon‘s AI personal assistant Alexa incited German authorities to action after reportedly throwing “her own party” in a Hamburg resident’s flat. The Alexa-enabled soirée began to play music at maximum volume at 1:50 AM. The noise exacerbated neighbors who called the police to register the disturbance. Police broke into the sixth-floor Hamburg flat, quieting Alexa at approximately 3:00 AM.
Alexa’s owner, Oliver Haberstroh, has since shared news of the incident with Amazon, posting a complaint on Amazon’s German Facebook page. Haberstroh writes “Alexa managed on her own, without command and without me using my mobile to turn on at full volume and have her own party at my apartment. She decided to have it at a very inconvenient time, between 1.50am and 3.00am. My neighbours called the police”
Enjoying an evening out during Alexa’s outburst, Haberstroh returned home to find a new lock on his door. Once Haberstroh visited a local police station, he received not only a new set of keys corresponding to the lock, but an invoice for the new lock as well.
Amazon has worked with Haberstroh to determine that Alexa’s Echo feature was “remotely activated,” causing the volume to increase through Haberstroh’s “third party mobile music-streaming app.” Amazon maintains that Alexa’s cloud service “worked flawlessly,” with no malfunction, but has offered to pay Haberstroh’s invoice.