Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)’s fire OS 5 has been downgraded encryption wise and the company claimed that it had nothing to do with the recent case of the FBI and Apple. It claimed because of its own reasons the company had decided to retreat on the encryption. The question is why??
Amazon spokesman Robin Handaly said that when they introduced the Fire OS 5 in fall they removed the features which they had noticed that their customers were not using. Big mistake or not, we don’t know but in the modern day world where an average hacker can attack your device from anywhere you would at least expect there to be some protection.
He, however, said that all Amazon tablets met their high standards for privacy and security, including appropriate use of encryption. One can only wonder what Amazon by security means because maybe they misunderstand the word.
Fire tablets aren’t as widely used as much as the common ones that run the iOS and the heavily populated Android operating system. The decision to remove the encryption feature can only do nothing but harm the company.
They do however claim that other older devices which are not on the Fire Operating System 5 still have the encryption feature. Given that the operating system had been laying there with the feature without any complaints from users one can only assume that leaving it there would have done nothing but good for the company.
Ana analyst digital rights organization criticised the downscaling of the encryption system saying that the simple act of removing encryption data on its own was wrong and was a backward idea. This opens up the device and encourages hackers to give it a try and therefore, there is nothing to be gained from the move.
The analyst claims that the move is not a retreat in the face of FBI and Apple pressures but he had seen it coming from months away. The news does, however, come at a delicate time for Amazon because many consumers and technological giants have been supporting Apple in the ongoing battle whether Apple should allow FBI to have a backdoor to iPhones.
Amie Stapovich, US Policy Manager at Access Now said, “This move does not help users. It does not help the corporate image. And it does not fit into industry trends.” It clearly shows that Amazon might be taking a bold step in the wrong direction.