“Smart” products are the latest tech wave promising many time-saving conveniences. But these products can potentially pose personal privacy risks. How much do you know about smart TV monitoring? Read on to learn more.

User tracking. Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) sends data to manufacturers about what plays on your TV from broadcast and cable channels, streaming services and connected DVD players.

Use of ACR data. The information collected by manufacturers may be sold to “big data” brokers, similar to how “likes” on Facebook and Google searches are tracked, to compile and sell to marketers.

Opting out. You can turn off some data-collection features. However, be aware that many smart TVs will continue to collect non-identifying information from your set in order to provide basic functions.

Turning it off. Consult the owner’s manual for your TV to find out what data is being collected, what features you lose by opting out, and how to turn off ACR data collection. If you’ve lost or misplaced the owner’s manual, manufacturers usually post PDF versions for each model on their websites.

Smart devices can provide amazing conveniences. Just make sure to read the owner’s manual and understand the data collected by each device.

Source: ©2017 Vantage Production. Consumer Reports

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