Apple reveals small number of users had Siri recordings kept despite opting out

Sharing Photo With Siri In Ios
Sharing Photo With Siri In Ios (Image credit: Luke Filipowicz / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple lets users opt-out of improving Siri by allowing the company to review recordings of their voice interactions.
  • Apple says a bug in iOS 15 inadvertently enabled the Improve Siri & Dictation setting for a small portion of devices.
  • It means their audio was kept and reviewed without their permission.

Apple has revealed that it has recently fixed a bug that inadvertently led to a small portion of users having their Siri audio recordings kept and reviewed by the company.

ZDNet reports a change to the latest iOS 15.4 beta which will ask users if they want to opt-in to helping Apple improve Siri and dictation by allowing Apple to review the recordings. This is because Apple has revealed that it had to fix a bug introduced in iOS 15 that lead to some recordings being kept and recorded inadvertently despite people option out:

However, Apple found a bug in iOS 15 that enabled the setting for some users who had previously opted out. In other words, recordings were being kept for some users who had opted out of the setting instead of being deleted. Apple has since deleted the erroneous recordings.

Apple says it turned off the setting for "many users" in iOs 15.2 to fix the bug, its full comment stated:

"With iOS 15.2, we turned off the Improve Siri & Dictation setting for many Siri users while we fixed a bug introduced with iOS 15. This bug inadvertently enabled the setting for a small portion of devices. Since identifying the bug, we stopped reviewing and are deleting audio received from all affected devices."

Siri is one of the best iPhone features available for all sorts of everyday tasks such as setting timers or recording reminders, sending texts, and requesting songs on Apple Music.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9