Innovative AI Devices Revolutionizing Child Safety Monitoring

Privacy campaigners have raised concerns about the growing use of AI-powered gadgets and toys that collect vast amounts of data on children and anyone within earshot.

These devices, many of which are marketed as educational tools or fun playthings, are often equipped with microphones, cameras, and other sensors that can gather sensitive personal information. In some cases, this data can include conversations, location information, and even facial recognition data.

One particularly concerning example is the Angel Watch, a smartwatch that was launched in the UK last year. The watch can be used to track children’s whereabouts, listen in on their conversations, and even take photos and videos without their knowledge or consent.

Another device that has raised alarm bells is Moxie, an AI robot designed to teach children social skills. Moxie costs around $1,200 and can record audio and video from people around it, sharing these “conversations” with Google and OpenAI, the company that created ChatGPT.

These examples are just a few of the many AI-powered gadgets that are currently on the market. And as the technology continues to develop, we can expect to see even more devices that can collect even more data on children and anyone near them.

Privacy campaigners are calling on parents and policymakers to be aware of the potential risks of these devices and to take steps to protect children’s privacy.

What are the risks of using AI-powered gadgets with children?

There are a number of potential risks associated with using AI-powered gadgets with children. These risks include:

  • Privacy violations: These devices can collect vast amounts of personal information on children, including their conversations, location data, and even facial recognition data. This information could be used to track children, target them with advertising, or even blackmail them.
  • Security breaches: These devices are often connected to the internet, which makes them vulnerable to hacking. Hackers could potentially gain access to the data collected by these devices, or even take control of the devices themselves.
  • Social and emotional harm: The constant surveillance of AI-powered gadgets can be harmful to children’s social and emotional development. Children may feel anxious or paranoid if they know that they are being constantly monitored.

What can parents do to protect their children’s privacy?

Parents can take a number of steps to protect their children’s privacy from AI-powered gadgets:

  • Do your research: Before buying an AI-powered gadget, do your research to make sure that you understand how it collects, stores, and uses data.
  • Read the privacy policy: Carefully read the privacy policy of any AI-powered gadget before you buy it. This will tell you how the company collects, stores, and uses your child’s data.
  • Set parental controls: Many AI-powered gadgets have parental controls that can be used to limit the data they collect. Use these controls to protect your child’s privacy.
  • Talk to your children about privacy: Talk to your children about the importance of privacy and explain to them how AI-powered gadgets can collect data on them.
  • Be a role model: Set a good example for your children by being mindful of your own privacy.

What can policymakers do to protect children’s privacy?

Policymakers can also take a number of steps to protect children’s privacy from AI-powered gadgets:

  • Enact stronger privacy laws: Policymakers should enact stronger privacy laws that specifically protect children’s data.
  • Regulate AI-powered gadgets: Policymakers should regulate AI-powered gadgets to ensure that they are designed and used in a way that protects children’s privacy.
  • Educate parents and children: Policymakers should educate parents and children about the risks of AI-powered gadgets and how to protect themselves.

By taking these steps, we can help to ensure that children are safe and protected from the potential harms of AI-powered gadgets.


Q: What are creepy AI gadgets?

A: Creepy AI gadgets are devices that utilize artificial intelligence (AI) to collect personal data, track individuals, or engage in surveillance activities without their knowledge or consent. These gadgets often raise concerns about privacy violations and the potential for misuse.

Q: Why are some AI gadgets considered creepy?

A: Several factors contribute to the perception of AI gadgets as creepy:

  • Unclear data collection practices: Many AI gadgets lack transparency regarding how they collect, store, and use personal data, raising concerns about potential misuse or privacy breaches.
  • Surveillance capabilities: Some AI gadgets incorporate microphones, cameras, or other sensors that can monitor users’ activities, conversations, or surroundings, creating a sense of intrusion and privacy violation.
  • Limited user control: Users often have limited control over the data collected by AI gadgets and may not be able to opt out of data collection or access their collected data.

Q: What are some examples of creepy AI gadgets?

A: Examples of AI gadgets that have raised concerns about creepiness include:

  • Smart toys with microphones and cameras: These toys may collect audio and video recordings of children without their knowledge or consent.
  • Smartwatches with tracking capabilities: Some smartwatches can track users’ location, activities, and even conversations without their explicit permission.
  • Voice assistants with always-on recording: Voice assistants like Amazon Alexa or Google Home may record conversations even when not actively addressed, raising privacy concerns.

Q: What are the potential risks of using creepy AI gadgets?

A: The use of creepy AI gadgets poses several potential risks, including:

  • Privacy violations: The collection of personal data without consent can lead to identity theft, targeted advertising, or even blackmail.
  • Surveillance and tracking: Continuous monitoring of individuals can be intrusive, restrict freedom of movement, and create a sense of being constantly watched.
  • Data misuse and manipulation: Collected data may be used for purposes beyond the user’s knowledge or consent, potentially leading to unfair treatment or discrimination.

Q: What can be done to address concerns about creepy AI gadgets?

  • Increased transparency: AI gadget manufacturers should provide clear and transparent information about data collection practices, data usage policies, and user privacy controls.
  • Enhanced user control: Users should have comprehensive control over the data collected by AI gadgets, including the ability to opt out of data collection, access their data, and delete it upon request.
  • Stricter regulations: Governments should implement regulations that protect user privacy and data security in the development and use of AI gadgets.
  • Public awareness and education: Consumers should be informed about the potential risks associated with creepy AI gadgets and encouraged to make informed decisions about their use.

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