Siri, Alexa can be manipulated through ultrasounds, researchers find

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A team of researchers at Hangzhou, China-based Zhejiang University found ultrasound frequencies can send commands to popular voice assistants like Siri, Alexa and Cortana, reports Bleeping Computer.

The experiment — dubbed "DolphinAttack" — was inspired by the way dolphins sometimes communicate at frequencies deemed inaudible for most humans.

The researchers determined an attacker could take normal voice commands, convert the signal to ultrasound frequencies — which are inaudible to human ears — and use off-the-shelf electronics costing only $3 to send commands to nearby voice assistant platforms.

In addition to Siri, Alexa and Cortana, Google Now, Huawei HiVoice and Samsung S Voice were vulnerable to manipulation from ultrasound frequencies. The experiment tested 16 platforms or devices that use voice assistant software, including the platforms installed on some Audi smart car models.

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