Alexa Drop In: Can People Eavesdrop Without your Knowledge? - Robot Powered Home (2023)

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In this day and age of data protection and privacy, it is hardly unreasonable to ensure that your personal information and conversations stay private.

In this light, devices like Alexa Echo Dot are being looked at with more and more suspicion.

I myself had heard a rumor a few weeks back that people can actually listen to your conversations through the Alexa Drop In feature.

I was obviously surprised and seriously considered getting rid of my own Echo Dot.

Before taking any drastic steps, I thought it would be best to first do my own research.

The information I found was not exactly relieving and I found several facts about Alexa that I had no idea about.

Given how widespread the fear of Alexa Drop In was, I thought that I should share my knowledge with other Alexa users.

I did my research by thoroughly going through the privacy policy accompanying all Amazon Alexa-enabled devices.

I then researched the various ways that are available to us to minimize the amount of data that such devices record without our consent.

Finally, I watch various myth-busting videos on YouTube to gain a wider understanding of the topic.

With the Alexa Drop In feature, people can eavesdrop on you if you have given them the access to drop in on your Echo device anything. However, you will be alerted as soon as someone drops in.

Alexa Drop-In: What is it Anyway?

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You must have seen the ‘Drop in’ feature on your Amazon Echo device and are now wondering what it does anyway?

Well, simply enough, the drop in feature basically turns all your Alexa-enabled devices into walkie-talkies.

Let’s say you are cooking a delicious meal in the kitchen and your kids are playing in the living room.

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To call your kids to the dinner table, you can simply say ‘Alexa, drop in on the living room’.

The Alexa-enable device near your kids will ring by flashing green light and then connect automatically.

Voila, you can now tell your kids to come down for dinner without actually going through the trouble of physically going to the living room.

In other words, you can use it to call an Alexa device in another house.

Call an Actual Existing Phone Number Using Alexa Drop-In

You cannot make direct phone calls using the Drop-In feature. The ‘drop in’ feature only lets you connect to other Amazon Alexa-enabled devices.

So, if you want to contact someone using the Drop-in feature, you will have to make sure they have an Alexa speaker as well.

You can drop in on anyone from your contact list. But first, your contacts need to open their Alexa app and give you permission to drop in on their Echo devices.

Make a Skype Call Using Alexa Drop-In

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You cannot make skype calls using the Drop-In feature. The ‘drop in’ feature only lets you connect to other Amazon Echo devices for communication.

However, you can use your Amazon Echo device to make calls on Skype through Alexa, by asking Alexa to do so.

What’s Going on During an Alexa Drop In?

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Your Alexa device notifies you when you receive a drop in. The device will flash a green light and then automatically connect you with the person.

This is pretty much like your Alexa’s light glowing yellow when it informs you about orders you’ve placed on Amazon.

Anyone in the vicinity of the Echo device can talk to you via drop in.

This green light on the Echo Dot will glow continuously while the Drop In is happening.

You can turn off the Echo Dot Light, but the process for each light is a little different.

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The green light will keep spinning while you are chit-chatting on your Echo device. The light stops blinking when the drop in ends.

Does Alexa Record What you Say?

As soon as you say the wake word like ‘Alexa’ or ‘Echo’, your Alexa device will start recording whatever you speak and store it on the Amazon servers.

Whenever you ask her a question, Alexa uses a Search Engine to answer your query.

You can tell your Alexa is listening to you and recording you when your Alexa is lighting up blue.

You might get worried about someone listening to your recordings. Not to worry.

You can opt out of this feature with these simple steps:

  • Go to Settings, click on Alexa Privacy and then on Manage your Alexa Data.
  • Now click on Choose How Long to Save Recordings, go to Don’t Save Recordings and click on Confirm.
  • In the last step, scroll down on your screen and click on Help Improve Alexa, and now turn off Use of Voice Recordings.

What Data does Alexa Collect on You?

Alexa collects your personal data such as your name, email, phone number, address, device location, location history, IP address, payment information, and personal interests.

Alexa also records your voice recordings and stores them on their servers to train their Artificial Intelligence.

How Can Someone Eavesdrop on You During an Alexa Drop In Call

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The drop in feature lets you talk to other Echo device users.

Once someone has accepted your request to connect, you can drop in on them automatically anytime, until they turn the permission off again.

Let’s say you sent your friend a drop in request through the Alexa App. Once your friend accepts your request, you can drop in on them anytime and eavesdrop on their conversation.

You can eavesdrop on your friend’s conversation until they have turned off the drop in permission.

And if you put yourself on mute, your friend won’t be able to hear you at all.

Can I just turn off Alexa Drop In Altogether?

You can turn off the ‘Drop In’ altogether in these simple steps.

  • Open your Alexa App.
  • Open Communicate.
  • Now select Contacts.
  • Then select My Communication Settings.
  • Now slide the toggle to turn off Drop In on your device.

How to Improve your Personal Privacy While Using Alexa

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Mute your Alexa

The microphone on your Alexa is always listening until you put it on mute. You can stop your Alexa from listening to you by pressing the microphone on top of your device.

Unplug your Alexa when not in Use

Amazon devices need to be plugged in to work. Therefore, you can simply unplug it from the socket when you don’t need it.

Don’t be worried about your data, it’s always safe and secure within your device. It will start running as usual whenever you plug it back.

Delete Alexa Recordings Using the Alexa App

Alexa keeps a record of your voice recordings on its server. However, you can delete your recording on your Alexa App.

Follow these steps to delete such recordings:

  • Open Alexa App.
  • Select More on the bottom bar and then select Settings on the list.
  • Select Alexa Privacy.
  • Now, select Review Voice History.
  • You can now select the recordings you want to delete.

To make this task easy, you can set your Alexa to automatically delete the recordings as well.

  • Go to your Alexa app.
  • Tap on More and select Settings.
  • Select Alexa Privacy.
  • Select Manage Your Alexa Data.
  • Now go to Automatically delete recordings, then tap on Off to enable the setting.
  • You can select a time period to keep your voice recordings.
  • Select Confirm.

Use the Privacy Shutter on the Echo Show

The Amazon Echo comes with a built-in shutter for the camera to protect your privacy.

You can simply move the slider right above the camera to put the shutters on whenever you want.


You can rest assured that Alexa is not a spy that the big brother has hired to know everything about you. It is a device for your convenience and is actually quite helpful.

There is a certain degree of data sharing that comes as a default with all Alexa-enabled devices.

However, you have the option to opt-out of all of this data sharing and automatic voice recording.

Data sharing is the price that one has to pay for making such devices more efficient.

Not just Alexa, but other digital platforms such as Google and Facebook also track your activities to make these platforms more efficient.

You as an individual have to decide whether data privacy is more important to you or the efficiency of digital platforms.

However, you can keep Alexa’s activity under control by turning on the “Do not Disturb” feature available on the device.

This will disable all notifications related to calls and messages to your device.

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But, to best tailor your Alexa to your preferences you should know all about Alexa’s Ring Colors.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How can you tell if someone is dropping in on Alexa?

Alexa would ask for your permission when someone is dropping in for the first time.

When someone is dropping in on the Alexa-enabled device in your room, the device will flash a green light.

Alexa would not ask for your permission again if someone is dropping in when you have already granted permission to them.

However, the green light would keep flashing till the person stops dropping in.

Can Alexa spy on me?

Alexa does not record and send everything you say and do to Amazon.

However, it does sometimes happen that Amazon sends your Alexa recordings to graders to make sure that Alexa is working properly and also to improve the working of the system.

It might also sometimes happen that Alexa starts recording what you are saying because you said something sounding similar to ‘Alexa’.

Can I have 2 separate Alexa accounts?

You can have more than one person using Alexa by setting up an Amazon Household.

Each one of your family members must have their own Amazon account.

After you have set up Alexa Household and added all the accounts, you can start switching between those accounts just by asking Alexa to do so.

How much does Alexa cost a month?

Once you buy any Alexa-enabled device, you can use it without paying any additional charges.

However, there are related services like Amazon prime that you can buy by paying a subscription fee.

Can Alexa hear you all the time?

No, Alexa does not hear you all the time. Alexa only starts recording when it gets activated upon hearing you say prompts like ‘Alexa’ or ‘Echo’.

It may sometimes happen that you say a word similar to these prompts which gets confused by the device, thereby activating the device.


Can you eavesdrop with Alexa drop in? ›

Can you eavesdrop with Alexa drop in?

Can Alexa listen to conversations at home? ›

Can Alexa listen to conversations at home?

Can people drop in on your Alexa? ›

Can people drop in on your Alexa?

How do I stop Alexa from eavesdropping? ›

How do I stop Alexa from eavesdropping?


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