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As Apple Battles FBI Over Privacy, Amazon Quietly Drops Encryption Feature

© AFP 2023 / LEON NEALA picture shows the logo of the online retailer Amazon dispalyed on computer screens in London on December 11, 2014
A picture shows the logo of the online retailer Amazon dispalyed on computer screens in London on December 11, 2014 - Sputnik International
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As Apple refuses to back down to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) over encryption and the right to privacy, Amazon appears to be doing the opposite, quietly taking away the ability to encrypt their devices.

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Apple has been very publicly fighting the FBI regarding encryption, even resorting to an open letter alerting the public to the dangers of allowing surveillance agencies and anyone with the will and ability to gain full access to private data. While Apple gains industry support for their refusal, Amazon has removed the ability to encrypt devices running their Fire OS operating system.

Amazon released a belated statement which has not mollified angry users.

“In the fall when we released Fire OS 5, we removed some enterprise features that we found customers weren't using. All Fire tablets' communication with Amazon's cloud meet our high standards for privacy and security including appropriate use of encryption,” Amazon told ZNet.

The FBI, alongside its legal moves against Apple, has repeatedly taken their push to gain access to citizen data to more public forums, adopting an approach akin to asking the public to sympathize with the San Bernadino shooting victim’s families.

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Apple, with backing from privacy organizations, such as Fight for the Future, has accused the federal government of exploiting the tragedy in San Bernardino to push an agenda of weakening iPhone, and other device, security to enable easier surveillance.

"The government could extend this breach of privacy and demand that Apple build surveillance software to intercept your messages, access your health records or financial data, track your location, or even access your phone's microphone or camera without your knowledge,” according to the Apple statement.

A federal court hearing in California has been scheduled for March 22 for the battle between the FBI and Apple.

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