Cybercriminals could potentially develop malicious voice apps that turn Amazon Alexa devices and Google Home smart speakers into spy equipment that eavesdrops on users and even phishes for passwords, according to a new report.

The report, from Germany-based Security Research Labs (SRLabs), warns that security lapses in the way Google Home and Alexa devices (such as the Echo smart speaker) accept voice commands and communicate with users could allow adversaries to specifically craft "Skills" (the official term for Alexa apps) and "Actions" (the official term for Google Home apps) that turn the devices into "Smart Spies."

Among the biggest deficiencies, according to SRLabs, is the way that Amazon and Google allow Skill and Action developers to make certain functionality changes after the voice apps have already gone through the security review and approval process, without any further scrutiny.

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