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Warning: Latest Kindle Fire Update Turns on Passwords by Default

Amazon rolled out a long-wished-for update on Thursday which added parental controls  to block access to the store, browser, and what have you. Unfortunately for a lot of Kindle Fire owners, Amazon doesn’t appear to have thought this through.

A number of Kindle Fire owners have reported that, upon receiving the new update, they are locked out of their devices. I have now gotten 4 comments on my blog and found a couple dozen concurring complaints over on Amazon’s Kindle Forums.  All are reporting much the same issue, and there are a number of details in common. None of the afflicted owners actually enabled the password. They all report that the update did it to their Kindle Fires.

In case it’s not clear, the owners didn’t forget the passwords or set them wrong. No, the issue here is that the Kindle Fires are asking for passwords that do not exist.  There is literally nothing that can be entered that will fix this problem.

That’s really not a good thing, and what’s worse is that no one has figured out a solution yet. A couple users have even contacted Kindle Support, but Amazon is just as baffled by this as we are. The only suggestion that the CS reps could make was to do a factory rest. Naturally, the afflicted owners are not exactly happy about that.

And as reports continue to come in this looks like it’s going to grow into a truly massive clusterfuck. I have no idea where it’s going to end, but this news is important enough that it needed to be shared.

But I can tell you that one KF owner reported that CS said the Kindle tech team is aware of the issue and they are working on a solution. Let’s hope they find it soon.

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Sherri May 6, 2012 um 12:32 am

Fascinating. It doesn’t happen to everybody; my KF updated and I didn’t have any problems. Wonder what the common denominator is for the affected devices?

april February 6, 2015 um 6:26 pm

mine is F@@ked up!!!!!!!!

Anne May 6, 2012 um 7:05 am

No problem with mine, either. It updated by itself. No problems using it since.

Timothy Wilhoit May 6, 2012 um 7:22 am

Same here. Mine updated on its own and the parental controls are set to "OFF." It’s odd that some KF’s default to OFF while others do not.

K H Acton May 6, 2012 um 7:31 am

I didn’t have any problems either. I did follow Andrys’s advice and created a password in case somebody accidentally turned it on.

hajones May 6, 2012 um 9:59 pm

My KF has been like this since the update…so I am locked out of web browsing on the native silk browser and cannot buy or download any apps…i had another browser downloaded and this working…but hour correct nothing works…no obvious default password or my amazon password or anything else and I did not have passwords enabled at all prior to the update. Thanks for keeping on the story…

George May 7, 2012 um 9:26 am

I don’t think the new update has pushed across on my Fire yet, but I took the step of creating a password just in case.

Good thing this happened to an Amazon product and that they’re trying to find solutions. If it was an Apple or Microsoft product, they’d probably call it a feature… 😉

Ste t May 8, 2012 um 6:20 pm

I had the same password lock out after update and tried my amazon password and that worked (not having created a password on kf) hope this may help .

Lasmom May 8, 2012 um 7:20 pm

My tried to unlock the parental controls with my Amazon password and that didn’t work either. I hope there is a solution soon. This is not good.

Julie May 8, 2012 um 9:50 pm

Update: I just tried the last 4 digs of my ssn. It worked! Now where the Kindle got this….I don’t know. I don’t recall giving it to Amazon, but maybe I did ages ago…

Crystal Garrett December 15, 2012 um 9:20 am

Worked for me too. Not sure how they got that, but thanks for the tip! My 8 year old was devastated she couldn’t download her game!!!! LOL

jessy May 9, 2012 um 1:54 pm

Hi I had the same problem and i used my amazon password and it worked, try it.
good luck.

Juliet May 9, 2012 um 5:47 pm

Wow. Thank you, Julie. I just tried my last four digits of my ss # and that did work! I’m so confused, as well, as to where they got that number. I’m 100% sure I never gave them that. Not good.

karalee May 10, 2012 um 3:31 am

same here. locked out… never set up password. none of the ssn or amazon passwords work either. i’m CRANKY. 🙁

Allyson May 10, 2012 um 4:31 am

Mine has the same problem! I am hoping a fix comes so that I don’t have to reset by KF. This is ridiculous!!!

Connie May 10, 2012 um 5:17 am

I have 2 months of appointments scheduled on my Kindle calender. Way to much information to lose by a factory reset or to retype into another product. Any way to save information to SD or to computer to retrieve later?

Still Having Issues With The Kindle Fire Update? Here’s How to Fix it – The Digital Reader May 11, 2012 um 1:51 pm

[…] · No Comments · Amazon, tips and tricksTweet EmailTweet EmailLast Saturday night I posted a warning note about the recent Kindle Fire firmware update. A fair number of users were reporting that the new […]

Steve May 16, 2012 um 5:04 pm

Just ran update. NEVER and I mean NEVER set a password for my WiFi or otherwise. Locked out of ALL of my DATA… thankfully I am able to AND GOING to take mine back to where I purchased it..if Amazon does not fix this "BUG" in 1 week from this post… and pay $50 buck more for a much better 7″ tablet that. This is rediculous and I am a senior security official with a Gov. organization that has well over 25 years experience in IT.. This just plain should NOT have happened.. and is flat out a BUG…

Steve May 16, 2012 um 5:10 pm

Sorry… not ALL of my Data, but no more Wireless connectivity unless I delete all my stored info and then perform a factory reset through no fault or issue created by myself.. but on account of Amazon running an update on my Kindle Fire… Very frustrating and UNDEPENDABLE to say the least..

Ron Sankey May 18, 2012 um 8:31 am

It happened on mine after the update.
I know 100% for certain, I Did NOT enable this.

This sucks.
Is there a default password ?
I tried all the usual generic ones… including amazon one, etc…

IC June 18, 2012 um 9:33 pm

OH MY GOD you are a GOD!!!! thank you…lower case first name worked!!!!

Yoga May 20, 2012 um 3:25 am

If you have – once upon a time – set a PIN (Lock Screen Password under Setting -> Security) but then disable it back, try to use that PIN. It works for me.

Gary May 28, 2012 um 9:03 am

For the parental control problem….First we tried all the passwords we used (worked for some people)…and nothing
Next tried to deregister and then register the device (worked for some)…..and nothing

I tried lowercase first name of registered user……BINGO….try first name of registered user!!!

John June 4, 2012 um 2:20 pm

You got to be kidding me! This long and they cant come up with a solution? I left my Fire on while charging after not using it for awhile and it updated and locked me out. I have too much on it to loose after doing a factory reset. Is this their way of making you repurchase apps? here I come.

Amazon Releases New Update For K4 – Beware! – The Digital Reader June 4, 2012 um 4:02 pm

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IC June 18, 2012 um 9:16 pm

I have been going crazy researching solutions. It makes me feel better im not the only one. I kept trying to figure out if i set parental controls on my own, and then after watching a video relaized I would have remembered if it entailed so much. All I can say is WTF, I have to set it back to factory settings now?? are my books going to be gone???

Linda August 16, 2012 um 11:32 pm

My grand -daughter used her own money she saved from raising a goat for the fair to buy a kindle fire and now she can not use it. If she resets she loses all her apps and stuff this is a bunch of crap. They should not do a update on this unless approved by the owner first. So are you going to give her money back if you can’t fix this???

Tammy Aubol November 29, 2012 um 10:20 pm

This really sucks! I’m glad it’s just not me though but am not really sure what to do. I can’t get to my settings or anything. HELP!!!!!

jack December 1, 2012 um 12:12 pm

Password for router worked for me

isabell April 14, 2013 um 8:24 pm

im so mad i got on and im afraid that if i reset it i will lose all my stuff can anyone asure me that if i reset it it will leave my stuff in the cloud

Pascale March 28, 2014 um 4:19 pm

It is still going on! My son was asked to upgrade his KF last night and now we cannot get access anything. I have tried all the solutions suggested but unfortunately no luck in our case. I phoned customer support – was told that we had forgotten the password until I told him that I read the blogs, when he shut up. He then tried to suggest it was a security feature until I pointed out it cannot be a security feature if even the parents cannot access it. When I asked where I could complain (it is almost two years since they knew about this problem) he gave me the email address of the CEO for Amazon UK. I have written to Mr Christopher North this evening together with emails to the main consumer watchdog TV and radio programmes on the BBC. I think it is time we shame Amazon into doing something about this.

Fred October 17, 2014 um 8:23 am

Still going on again. This judt happened to us tonight. Pure outright BS!!! Why is this company doing this to consumers who psy good money for shitty products.

Shane October 22, 2014 um 9:59 pm

Same thing here…we typed 1234567890 and that worked to unlock KF

mike November 27, 2014 um 7:29 am

If you get locked out its simply whatever your password is to login to your main Amazon account

Jane Alowaied November 29, 2014 um 10:54 am

My KF was fine until I charged it last night and now I am completely locked out of it . Cannot change settings because they don’t come up. It just says to enter a pin number i do not have. BS!!!!

Radu January 22, 2015 um 9:53 am

I have a friend that just got the Kindle Fire HD (whatever is it called , 6″ color display reader) and she updated and got locked out. Since she was unaware of any PIN , i just tried 1234567890 and it worked. I guess that’s the standard pin for these devices , try it and see if it works!

Nate Hoffelder January 22, 2015 um 9:54 am


I didn’t know the problem was still happening with the newest models. Thanks for the heads up, and the default PIN code!

Liz December 1, 2014 um 7:12 pm

Same thing here. De-registered the KF, turned it on, but the the password lock out is still there. I’ve tried everything, old passwords, ssn, my name, my daughter’s name, phone numbers, etc. NOTHING works. Help!

Jules January 18, 2015 um 8:56 pm

My KF has been locked up since the summer of 2014, waiting to see if Amazon will step up and fix my problem. I have been asked for a pin # I never set up and yes I did do updates on mine. Please help if you’ve heard any updates on any progress from Amazon and hope they are going to rectify all of us who are getting shafted. Thank you.

Jules January 18, 2015 um 9:07 pm

My KF has not worked since the summer of 2014. After an update, later it asked for a pin # when I have never set 1 up. Please help if anyone gets anymore updates on how to fix this mess. I’ve been hoping Amazon would step up and do the right thing to get this rectified and to quit screwing us around? Thanks.

susan steenhuis February 12, 2015 um 2:29 pm

OMG! This happened to me as of yesterday – very frustrating.
Nothing is working, and it is only a big number pad on the screen, so how are some suggesting to type in words? Thanks, and unbelievable!!

Paul B March 20, 2015 um 8:12 am

I called Amazon U.S., they taked me through the process of getting rid of the Parental Controls password bug. It worked, and then they sent me the following E-Mail which describes the steps to take:
If you forget the Parental Controls password for your Fire tablet, you can deregister your device to reset the password. Your Fire tablet must be connected to a wireless network to deregister the device from your account.

1. Visit the Manage Your Content and Devices ( page on your computer.
2. Select the Your Devices tab.
3. Select your Fire tablet, then click "Deregister" to deregister your device from your account.
4. On the device swipe down from the top of the screen to open Quick Settings, and then tap Settings.
5. Tap Sync and Check for Items.

Once the device recognizes that it is deregistered, tap My Account in Settings on the device, and select Register. The Parental Controls password will be reset.

Deregistering your Fire tablet will also allow you to keep any items transferred to your device using the USB cable. After your Fire tablet has been deregistered, make sure it’s connected to a wireless network.

If you’re unable to deregister your Fire tablet from the Manage Your Content and Devices page, you’ll need to reset your device. Because a factory reset will remove any content you’ve downloaded to your device, make sure to back up any personal content to your computer first. Any digital purchases made from are saved to your account and can be downloaded to the device again from the Cloud tab.

Any in-app items may be lost during a factory reset. Please check with the app developer for more details on their in-app policies before completing a factory reset.

To reset your device:

1. Swipe down from the top of the screen, and then tap More.
2. Tap Device, and then tap Reset to Factory Defaults.

Thank you for choosing Amazon.

Mary Berke May 10, 2015 um 2:22 pm

I am totally locked out of my new Kindle Fire. When I turn it on it asks for a PIN number. I never set any PIN number. So, I have a completely useless tablet sitting here. Amazon, what do I do please? I just bought this little beauty and really want to use it.

Nate Hoffelder May 10, 2015 um 2:40 pm

Did you try 1234567890 , like one of the commenters above?

Ben May 25, 2015 um 11:02 pm

All you have to do is turn on your kindle, swipe left to unlock it. Now you’re at your password screen. Type in random numbers or letters (until it says you have to wait) then click "reset pin" and it’ll take you to a screen in which you type in your amazon password that you used when you made an account for the kindle, press enter, and then set your own new pin! It’s super simple! Please let anyone know who has this problem this simple solution!

Dan archer May 29, 2015 um 4:40 am

Sadly I am affected. Thankfully I’ve turned to Apple bcos they don’t mess up

Feda May 29, 2015 um 8:32 am


bonnie July 15, 2015 um 8:31 pm

My lock screen problem has a different cause. I clicked on the FREETIME icon and it would not let me back out until I set a pin number. I downloaded nothing. I did nothing inside FreeTime. All I did was to press the stupid icon to see what it was and it forced me immediately into setting screen lock pin#. I live alone, I don’t want to type a pin# just to shut off my morning alarm or to get back to what I was doing after each screen timeout. I have searched all the forums and find nothing that says how to undo this. … other than factory reset PERHAPS would work. I put the question to their online HELP and recv’d a garbled email (as if perhaps a computer translated to English from another language) that pretty much said to call them. They cannot help me via email. Given the state of the email message I admit I’ve been reluctant to actually get one of these people on the phone. Been there too many times before. My Kindle Fire HD should have had a huge label pasted on the front warning users about pressing the FreeTime icon.

bonnie July 15, 2015 um 9:25 pm

replying to my own comment. After previous hours a month ago trying to figure out a back-it-out method, I accidentally discovered how to stop the lock screen password. It was confusing that every time I selected the OFF setting for lock screen pwd it went directly to what I *thought* was a password reset. Turns out it was just a password verification making sure I had authority to disable the function. Once I entered my pin# it disabled the lock screen pin function. I let the screen time out, and no password was required to start using Kindle again. I know that doesn’t exactly apply to this forum, but it may help some other dumb bunny like myself.

But good grief, couldn’t Kindle/Amazon support have just put that set of 2-3 steps in an email?

Robert Argo December 5, 2015 um 1:08 pm

Now, I have to LOG-In to see my STORAGE !!!! Says its "Parental Protected"…what’s that got to do with looking at storage??? You people need to get someone that knows how to program. Kindle FIRE is getting in ONE BIG MESS !!!

roland cole May 20, 2016 um 11:30 pm

This is very bad. Got caught up in this Kindle rubbish. I gave up on iPod, never will buy an iphone and now I am going back to books made of paper. Only fire and termites to worry about.

Mandie June 21, 2016 um 12:45 pm

I did have parental controls set up on mine, and when the update happened, it somehow changed my parental controls password! Nothing I tried worked, until I entered it wrong 5-6 times and finally got the link to reset the password using my regular Amazon password. Incidentally, I also had an issue with my son’s profile not showing up at all after the update. He was very frustrated and upset because it took me a while to figure out how to fix it (I had to "re-register" the device, then his profile finally popped up).

Evette Smith February 5, 2017 um 2:32 am

I have NEVER set up a password for anything pertaining to my Kindle. However even though I have no idea how or why the 5th password attempt was accepted. I just used the same one that I use for other accounts and it worked!!! The problem is that it KEEPS HAPPPENING. Trust me it’s very aggravating, but as long as it keeps working I’ll just keep dealing with it. Thank You and GOOD LUCK

Peggy Austin March 8, 2017 um 10:18 am

Giving my Amazone password worked right away. Now, I have adjusted to the password log on and feel that it is a good security issue.

Tim April 7, 2017 um 9:17 pm

Just got the update and the same issue. I never setup a password on my Kindle, and now I cannot use it at all.

Richard February 2, 2019 um 8:19 am

There are only two accounts on this kindle. Mine and my daughter’s. After the automatic update, it defaults to hers. I cannot access the settings because it requires a pin. I cannot switch to mine because it doesn’t allow me to swap from child’s to adult without setting a pin under the adult account which cannot be swapped to in order to set up. It’s a catch 22 that prevents any entrance.

Jo October 24, 2021 um 11:00 pm

This advice solved my problem that happened in 2021 – cannot believe this is still happening!!!
How to Reset Passcode: Type 111222777 into the passcode entry field to reset your Kindle to factory settings. This information should be on the Amazon help page, especially considering that the problem first emerged in 2012!

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