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Steve Bruno

Web Project Manager,

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Should we be concerned with companies owning our data?

As far as I know, google was one of the first to pioneer the business model of providing an online service free of charge in order for them to harvest user data. Now I'm sure some of you are thinking "if people are willing to give up their information, it serves them right". I believe the average person has no idea what happens behind the scenes with large online services. For that matter most politicians don't fully understand it. Now, I am not saying that google, apple, twitter, or facebook have a master plan to turn people into sheep in order control them for their own financial gain, but the truth is that the temptation is growing as we willingly give them larger windows into our lives.

This centralized data world we are moving into needs to have some serious accountability, and safegards put in place. People need to be educated on not only with where we are now, but also in how we are being led to share more and more of our lives online, and where this could lead us as humanity.

If anyone has any insights on what measures may be in place to protect people that I am not aware of, please let me know. The advantages of having centralized data is incredible, and this was a natural progression of technology which is here to stay, but I do have my concerns.

RELATED NEWS

Banks sell consumers' shopping data to retailers:
http://money.cnn.com/2011/07/06/pf/banks_sell_shopping_data/index.htm?source=cnn_bin&hpt=hp_bn3

Mobile Privacy bill:
http://money.cnn.com/2011/06/15/technology/mobile_privacy_bill/index.htm?source=cnn_bin&hpt=hp_bn3

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  • Jun 24 2011: should we be concerned? ofcourse we should be. Companies have already started using personal data (like browsing patterns, possible interests etc) to form an information bubble around us. If they could use such non-confidential data to promote their agenda, what prevents them from using confidential data?

    Do we really believe that there is no "BIG brother" watching? Are they watching us for security? NO !! They are ONLY interested in profits and they are watching us to ensure we don't disrupt their profits.

    An interesting TED Talk: http://www.ted.com/talks/eli_pariser_beware_online_filter_bubbles.html

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