×

Amazon no longer encrypting data on tablets: Report

Amazon no longer supports certain kinds of encryption on its Fire devices, the company said. Their move comes as the debate continues around whether Apple should unlock an iPhone for an FBI investigation.

The change applies to Fire device users who've upgraded to the Fire OS 5 operating system, according to the company. Amazon told TechCrunch on Friday that encryption of data stored on the devices was an enterprise feature that customers weren't using.

"In the fall when we released Fire OS 5, we removed some enterprise features that we found customers weren't using," Amazon spokesperson Robin Handaly told CNBC in an email. "All Fire tablets' communication with Amazon's cloud meet our high standards for privacy and security including appropriate use of encryption."

Fire device users will not be able to encrypt data stored on the phones, but data transmitted from the phones will still be encrypted, according to a Fire tablet user guide screenshot tweeted by David Scovetta, a member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an organization that aims to protect technology users' rights.


This comes as a number of tech giants including Alphabet, Facebook and Microsoft, have shown their support for Apple's refusal to hack into an iPhone for an FBI investigation used by one of the San Bernardino shooters.

Read the full TechCrunch report here.

Update: Since this story was published, Amazon changed course, and said it would restore the previously removed encryption feature.