Microsoft’s big backtracking on Recall, the Windows 11 feature that records all PC activity

by Jerry

The Recall feature is a good idea on paper. The goal is to help the user get their hands on a file, document or web page in a very simple way, with the help of screenshots taken regularly and analyzed by an AI-enhanced character recognition technique. This means that Windows is able to record all user activity in the background.

Very quickly, the issue of data privacy came up. Because Recall records absolutely everything, including bank account logins and passwords, and other very personal information. Of course, Microsoft has provided guarantees: the feature is limited to PCs with the Copilot+ badge (although a hack allows it to be partially activated on incompatible computers), it is possible to create a “blacklist” of websites not to be captured (limited to Edge)…

Worse. While Microsoft has been committed to putting security first, experts have identified some very serious flaws in the racket. A hacker would then be able to discreetly consult the Recall database remotely. All of this gives bad publicity to Copilot+PC and AI, two areas where the publisher wants to push very hard.

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