Amazon issues Fire TV Stick warning that could stop you streaming

Amazon’s Fire TV Stick is one of the most popular ways to stream content online and it’s not hard to see why. Not only are these dongles incredibly cheap but they also offer instant access to a swathe of shows from services such as Netflix, Prime Video and Disney+.

There is of course another reason why users love Fire TV devices as they can be easily adapted via the option to side-load unofficial apps that aren’t found on Amazon’s store. This opens a world of additional content – much of which isn’t always legal to watch.

With some owners clearly using their Fire devices for illegal streaming, it seems Amazon is hoping to begin cracking down on this practice via a new warning message. As spotted by the team at AFTnews, it appears that when an app is now side-loaded a warning pops up that alerts users to the dangers of adding unofficial software to their devices.

A screenshot posted by AFTnews shows the message which reads, “WARNING: When you use applications from unknown sources, your TV and personal data are less secure and there is a risk of unexpected behavior. You agree that you are solely responsible for any damage to your device or loss of data that may result from using these applications.”

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It’s worth noting that Amazon isn’t stopping access to unofficial apps but the alert should be taken seriously as streaming content without permission can have consequences. It was recently announced that the UK police had begun knocking on the doors of 1,000 residents to warn them about watching premium shows and movies without paying. Using non-official platforms comes with other dangers such as data-stealing malware and displaying inappropriate adult content on TVs which will be worrying for those with young children in the house.

Recent research, which analysed 50 popular illegal streaming sites, found that all contained malicious content, while over 40 percent of them did not have a security certificate which means they probably aren’t safe to visit.

The warning is unlikely to stop people from side-loading but it might make them double-check exactly what is being added to the device before hitting the install button. This message isn’t the only change taking place on Fire Sticks.

A recent update has also stopped some users from being able to change the buttons of their remotes. Those wanting to tweak what each button does, have been able to make changes thanks to a neat Remapper app which offers the ability to switch things to suit your viewing tastes.

An upgrade pushed out to the Fire TV Stick 4K Max is now blocking the functionality of the Remapper which means it no longer works.In a post on AFTnews, its creator Elias Saba explained that, “Amazon has pushed out a software update to select Fire TV devices that prevents customers from remapping the app shortcut buttons at the bottom of Fire TV remotes.”

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