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Playlist: The dark side of data

11 talks · 2h 42m · Curated by TED

The dark side of data (11 talks)

Data can be used for good, harnessed for the betterment of society, but it can also be abused. Find out about some hidden not-so-sunny uses of Big Data.

  • 1.
    9:56
    Now playing
    What kind of data is your cell phone company collecting? Malte Spitz wasn’t too worried when he asked his operator in Germany to share information stored about him. Multiple unanswered requests and a lawsuit later, Spitz received 35,830 lines of code — a detailed, nearly minute-by-minute account of half a year of his life.
  • 2.
    19:18
    Now playing
    Recent events have highlighted, underlined and bolded the fact that the United States is performing blanket surveillance on any foreigner whose data passes through an American entity — whether they are suspected of wrongdoing or not. This means that, essentially, every international user of the internet is being watched, says Mikko Hypponen. An important rant, wrapped with a plea: to find alternative solutions to using American companies for the world's information needs.
  • 3.
    18:57
    Now playing
    Our leaders need to be held accountable, says journalist Heather Brooke. And she should know: Brooke uncovered the British Parliamentary financial expenses that led to a major political scandal in 2009. She urges us to ask our leaders questions through platforms like Freedom of Information requests — and to finally get some answers.
  • 4.
    14:19
    Now playing
    Every day there are news reports of new health advice, but how can you know if they're right? Doctor and epidemiologist Ben Goldacre shows us, at high speed, the ways evidence can be distorted, from the blindingly obvious nutrition claims to the very subtle tricks of the pharmaceutical industry.
  • 5.
    15:00
    Now playing
    The line between public and private has blurred in the past decade, both online and in real life, and Alessandro Acquisti is here to explain what this means and why it matters. In this thought-provoking, slightly chilling talk, he shares details of recent and ongoing research — including a project that shows how easy it is to match a photograph of a stranger with their sensitive personal information.
  • 6.
    14:30
    Now playing
    After he ended up on a watch list by accident, Hasan Elahi was advised by his local FBI agents to let them know when he was traveling. He did that and more ... much more.
  • 7.
    9:23
    Now playing
    Cybercrime expert Mikko Hypponen talks us through three types of online attack on our privacy and data — and only two are considered crimes. "Do we blindly trust any future government? Because any right we give away, we give away for good." (Filmed at TEDxBrussels.)
  • 8.
    15:22
    Now playing
    Kevin Slavin argues that we're living in a world designed for — and increasingly controlled by — algorithms. In this riveting talk from TEDGlobal, he shows how these complex computer programs determine: espionage tactics, stock prices, movie scripts, and architecture. And he warns that we are writing code we can't understand, with implications we can't control.
  • 9.
    16:56
    Now playing
    Could someone hack your pacemaker? At TEDxMidAtlantic, Avi Rubin explains how hackers are compromising cars, smartphones and medical devices, and warns us about the dangers of an increasingly hack-able world. (Filmed at TEDxMidAtlantic.)
  • 10.
    15:45
    Now playing
    Todd Humphreys forecasts the near-future of geolocation when millimeter-accurate GPS "dots" will enable you to find pin-point locations, index-search your physical possessions ... or to track people without their knowledge. And the response to the sinister side of this technology may have unintended consequences of its own. (Filmed at TEDxAustin.)
  • 11.
    13:10
    Now playing
    The founder of 4chan, a controversial, uncensored online imageboard, describes its subculture, some of the Internet "memes" it has launched, and the incident in which its users managed a very public, precision hack of a mainstream media website. The talk raises questions about the power — and price — of anonymity.