It’s already a well known fact that both Google and Facebook are out to kill personal privacy. Both institutions give you free access to information in exchange for the right to extract information about you, who you know, what you do, where you go. Et tu, Amazon?
The Privacy Wars
The futuristic and fictional Star Wars had The Clone Wars, loved by many who love the science and the fiction of the future.
Without so much as a pronouncement, we are living in the age of The Privacy Wars. Company after company wants information about you.
The latest is everyone’s favorite online store, retail behemoth Amazon. Not content to know what you’re reading, listening to, or watching, the new Amazon Fire Phone aims to know what you see, too.
What could be cooler than the cool Fire Phone? It has a 3D-like interface (also known as Dynamic Perspective) for just enough eye candy to disarm and dazzle you while it steals your privacy.
Fire Phone has the Amazon named Firefly technology built-in. Oooh. Cool, no? Firefly is a collection of technologies which work in the background using a variety of sensors to see and hear what’s around you.
What Firefly gathers is sent back to Amazon. You’re being harvested for information. What does Firefly gather?
It can hear which TV shows or movies or music is around you. Ostensibly, Amazon can hear your conversations, too. Firefly recognizes nearby objects, too. Amazon says it can recognize 100-million objects.
Yes, Amazon is learning what’s in your home, what you’re viewing or listening to– all done because you invited Amazon into your home. Point Fire Phone at a book and Firefly can find it on Amazon. You’re a one-click Buy Now from buying now.
Firefly also recognizes nearby phone numbers, works of art, QR codes, bar codes, and much more. Amazon Fire Phone knows you’re shopping at Walmart or Target or Macy’s through GPS and can send competitive advertising to you.
Amazon Knows You, Too
The Fire Phone also has a bunch of cameras; more than any other smartphone. They’re always watching your face. We don’t know if Amazon is constructing a facial recognition database and can use Firefly on the Fire Phone to know who you’re hanging out with, but that’s plausible in the age where privacy is dying.
Amazon Fire Phone is based on Fire OS which is a fork of Google’s ubiquitous Android OS which happens to be the home of 98-percent of the world’s mobile malware. How long before Fire OS supports malware which watches you and what you’re doing.
Not only does Amazon know what you shop for online, but now it’s getting pictures of what you see when you’re holding a Fire Phone. In the Firefly personal spying technology, Amazon has both a microphone and a number cameras which act as sensors to view what’s around you (and your face). Ostensibly, to sell you more stuff, but doing so requires that some of what you once considered to be private information (what you see, what you read, what you hear) becomes information that Amazon collects about you.
If this isn’t the beginning of the death of privacy I don’t know what is.