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Sex toy sends intimate data to its creator

Engadget Engadget 10/08/2016 Jon Fingas
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Connected sex toys that track your habits can be helpful, but at least one of them is a little too willing to transmit your personal data. Presenters at Def Con have revealed that at least one toy, the We-Vibe 4 Plus, regularly shares sensitive info with its creators at Standard Innovations Corporation. The couple-oriented vibrator sends its temperature to the manufacturer every minute, and reports whenever you change the vibration level. While it's not calling you out by name, it wouldn't take much to piece together details you probably don't want to share beyond your partner, such as when you climax and what it takes to get there.

As our columnist Violet Blue learned at Def Con, it's not helped by SIC's vague policies on how it handles your data. The policy you get in the necessary app covers information from the website, and there aren't any notices to tell you where that data is going and why.

SIC tellsFusion that it collects the vibration information for "market research" to determine which settings are the most effective, and temperature for "hardware diagnostic purposes." It's probably not selling your sex life to the highest bidder, and the company adds that it's "in the process of reviewing" its data collection policy to improve transparency. Until then, though, it's hard to know whether or not that data stays entirely within the company, and whether that data is sufficiently anonymized and protected. Whatever is the case, this is a reminder to think carefully about sex toys -- if you're not comfortable with the idea of someone else knowing about your behavior, you might want to stick to offline pleasure gear.

DEF CON

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