Google kills password, encryption protected safe folder
The desire of some bad actors to obtain personal information has never been greater. This morning we told you that short-form video app TikTok was caught spying on Apple iPhone users' clipboards after promising in March to stop this practice. The only reason that TikTok's actions were discovered was because of a new feature in iOS 14 that sends out a notification app telling iPhone users which apps are doing such spying.
To stop hackers and others with evil intentions from grabbing personal data, Google had a great idea to create a "safe folder" inside the Files by Google app that could only be accessed via a PIN or password. In addition, the information inside the folder would be encrypted and off-limits to other apps.
While the folder was never announced by Google, XDA managed to get it working a couple of weeks ago. But a tweet disseminated today by XDA's Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) states that Google has already taken the idea to the back of the Googleplex and killed off the project. In an attempt to access the safe folder as it did before, XDA ran into a banner from Google that said, "Safe folder is no longer supported. New files can't be saved here. Any files still in Safe folder will be moved out or deleted soon."
Safe folder for Android has been given the ol' hook by Google
Now you might be wondering why Google would put up a banner warning Android users that a feature never offered to the public will not work. There is a simple explanation for this. The banner wasn't meant for the public and was aimed at Googlers who were dogfooding the feature (which simply means that they were testing it out themselves).
Google's decision to eliminate the safe folder is a shame because it would have been one more useful tool to protect Android users' personal data.