Smart Home

Amazon Alexa keeps records of what you say—here's how to delete them

It only takes a few clicks to get rid of the recordings.

An Amazon Echo (third-generation) speaker sits on the counter. Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

From kitchen countertops to cars and headphones, Amazon's Alexa is everywhere these days. It’s easy to lean on the world’s most popular smart assistant because of the convenience she offers. You can ask her to turn on the lights, set up a video call with a friend, and much, much more.

While you’re busy inviting Alexa into the most personal parts of your life, she's busy making recordings of your private information. That's why you may want to take control by deleting your Alexa voice recordings regularly. By following the steps in our guide, you can keep Amazon out of your chats with Alexa. But first, some background on just why Alexa records you in the first place.

What are Alexa voice recordings used for?

Voice recordings usage
Credit: Amazon

Amazon studies user voice recordings to make improvements to Alexa, according to the company.

Each time you say "Alexa" (or whatever your wake word of choice happens to be), Amazon might be listening. However, the company says the wake word and the command or question that follows is the only part that’s being recorded.

This is all to help Alexa get smarter, but this may leave some smart home users feeling a bit uneasy. While Amazon points out that an “extremely small fraction of voice recordings are manually reviewed,” the recordings have been mismanaged in the past, including a few horror stories, so it doesn’t hurt to take precautions.

How to delete your Amazon Alexa voice recordings

Screenshots 1
Credit: Reviewed / Rachel Murphy

You can adjust Alexa's voice recording settings in the Amazon Alexa app, available for download on iOS and Android devices.

  1. Open the Amazon Alexa app.
  2. Tap the upper left corner to open the Settings menu.
  3. Select Alexa Privacy > Review Voice History.
  4. Choose the date range you want to delete from the dropdown menu.
  5. Tap Delete All Recordings under the dropdown menu.
  6. Click "Yes" to confirm the deletion of your Alexa voice recordings.

Other ways to manage your Alexa voice recordings

Screenshots 2
Credit: Reviewed / Rachel Murphy

There are other ways to manage your voice recordings in the Amazon Alexa app, like automatic deletion and turning off voice recordings altogether.

While you’re in the Alexa Privacy section, scroll down to the Manage Your Alexa Data area. Here, you can choose to have your Alexa voice recordings automatically deleted every three months, 18 months, or stored until you delete them.

For hands-free deletion on an Alexa-enabled device, you can say things like, “Alexa, delete what I just said” or “Alexa, delete everything I said today.”

Also in this data section, you can turn off the Alexa voice recordings feature once and for all. However, doing so may hinder your user experience a bit when it comes to using Alexa’s voice recognition capabilities and accessing new features from working properly.

Related content

Up next