“Silk” – smooth for id thieves?

The EFF Electronic Frontier Foundation has recently given it’s thumbs up to Silk the new browser for Amazon’s Kindle. Silk uses the cloud accelerator to improve performance. The issue up to this point is that this better performance comes with a negative side; namely security.

The issue at heart is that while using the cloud information is sent to Amazons servers and stored to ‘predict’ what website the user will go to next; therefore speeding things up. That information is store for up to thirty days. While Amazon says the information is kept private (unlike Facebook) there are some doubts. The EFF has approved Silk because the cloud can be turned off and Amazon has claims that secure web page visits (SSL and HTTPS) are not routed through Amazon’s servers therefore no information is stored. Still concerns do exist. Besides storing information about what sites a user visits, their search history is also stored. Sometimes that search history contains personal information.

Although the cloud can be turned off my concern is that the common user will not do it. Most people do not know that their information is being stored; they just happily click away thinking that once they turn off the computer all the information disappears. I also feel that Amazon, while saying all the right things now, will more than likely sell that information in the future. We are talking about a company that makes their profit selling things after all.