Who's Watching Out for Your Privacy?

The digital world is eroding our privacy. Every week, users post 3.5 billion pieces of information on Facebook. Twitter has over 100 million users. Google has over 900,000 servers. The content on social media sites reaches 80% of all internet users.

The data trail we leave behind on the internet is enormous.

“There has never been another time in history where privacy was under the kind of assault it is today,” said Rainey Reitman, activism director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). “Consumers have increasingly digital lives and they are developing an unfathomably large data trail every day.”

There is a perfect storm, Reitman says, involving digital lives, low-cost storage that allows companies to save everything, and the revenues that incent those companies to collect as much data as possible.


Who's watching out for your privacy interests?

It's not just our individual postings that's the problem, it's the aggregation. The recent changes in privacy policy by Google and Facebook (with its new mandatory timeline) highlight the growing problem.

Once the data is out there, it's out. You can't put toothpaste back in a tube. Programs and frameworks are being developed to give users more control, but they aren't here yet. Examples: User-Managed Access and OAuth 2.0 (to secure mobile content.)

Other projects "include personal data stores, and Vendor Relationship Management, a project at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard" and a "do not track" standard.

I wish the Government was as concerned with protecting our privacy rights as it is with protecting Hollywood's copyrights.

< Richard O'Dwyer: The Other Copyright Infrngement Extradition Case | Sunday Open Thread >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    Re "incent": had to look it up. (none / 0) (#1)
    by oculus on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:08:42 PM EST
    Also, it would be interesting to learn (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:19:30 PM EST
    how copyright infringement investigation and enforcement came to be under the jurisdiction of ICE.  Obviously it is:  link  

    But this area doesn't seem to fit into ICE's mission statement.  


    Mission: (none / 0) (#3)
    by oculus on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:21:19 PM EST
    ICE's primary mission is to promote homeland security and public safety through the criminal and civil enforcement of federal laws governing border control, customs, trade, and immigration. The agency has an annual budget of more than $5.7 billion dollars, primarily devoted to its two principal operating components - Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).

    Down here in the (none / 0) (#4)
    by fishcamp on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:42:07 PM EST
    Florida Keys we have an overabundance of Homeland Security and Border Patrol at about half of our 104 bridges watching for folks floating in on inner tubes illegally.  If they can't find any of those types they pick on we fishermen.  One little mistake and you are on the terrorist list for life.  Now they are letting the Cubans drill for oil fifty miles from Key West right in the Gulf stream.  Not good.