At the beginning of this week, Microsoft presented Recalla new artificial intelligence experience for Windows 11 with which it seeks to revolutionize the way we interact with everything we see and do on the computer. A kind of “photographic memory” that allows us to find anything among an infinite number of photos, documents, files, folders, browser tabs, chats or emails. And only in a matter of seconds. On paper it sounds spectacular—and even magical—but its operation is already raising warning lights about how it could affect our privacy.

United Kingdom He didn't waste time and already put Microsoft in the spotlight for Recall. BBC reports that the Office of the Information Commissioner, the body in charge of data protection in British territory, Contacted Redmond to request more information on the safety of this product. “We are consulting with Microsoft to understand the security measures implemented to protect user privacy,” they indicated.

This happens just as analysts and privacy experts have begun to question this new feature of Windows 11. Microsoft maintains that Recall has been developed to run in a 100 % local in their new Copilot+ PCs with ARM chips, since they necessarily require a neural processing unit (NPU), and the information is stored encrypted on the computer's hard drive, but concern has not been long in coming.

The United Kingdom wants to know how Recall works, the new thing from Microsoft

The United Kingdom wants to know how Recall works, the new thing from Microsoft for Windows 11The United Kingdom wants to know how Recall works, the new thing from Microsoft for Windows 11

Let's keep in mind that Recall works in the background taking screenshots of everything that happens on the PC every few seconds. This information is cataloged and processed using artificial intelligence to generate search parameters that allow finding anything using natural language, being able to go back in time for weeks or months. In addition, the tool has a timeline-type interface that allows you to navigate through those snapshots.

Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, was very excited about Recall's capabilities. The executive assured that a feature of this type can only be launched massively if it is only executed on-device. That is why, at least for now, it is limited to new computers with a Snapdragon X Plus or Snapdragon X Elite chip.

“One of the big dreams we've always had is how we introduce memory. A photographic memory for what you do on a PC; and now we have it. It's called Recall. It's not a keyword search, but a semantic search across your history. And it's not just about a document. Essentially, we can recreate moments from the past,” Nadella said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.

Criticisms have been expected

Beyond the scrutiny of the UK Information Commissioner's Office, senior figures have criticized Microsoft for the launch of Recall. Elon Musk criticized those from Redmond and described this new Windows 11 feature as something taken from the series Black Mirror.

Microsoft maintains that Recall is optional and that it can be paused or disabled completely from the Windows 11 settings. It even offers the option to delete specific captures or prevent them from being taken. snapshots from certain websites or applications. Additionally, the Americans claim that no information captured by this feature is sent to the company nor is it used to display personalized ads.

Despite them, privacy experts They distrust that Microsoft will keep that promise forever. Jen Caltrider, team leader Privacy not includedan initiative of the Mozilla Foundation, told BBC that anyone who knows your password and physically reaches your PC will gain unrestricted access to everything you do daily. Something that could become a problem in the future if, for example, security agencies obtained a court order to search your equipment.

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