Data Privacy

Technological development has always outpaced privacy concerns, but never more so than in the past decade. Collection and centralization of personally identifiable information (PII), tracking of movements and digital surveillance are all at unprecedented levels. Regulations and laws are only just beginning to catch up to the ability of both governments and private entities to deploy these capabilities.

 

What exactly is there to worry about? The mass collection and centralization of data by giant multinationals such as Facebook and Google is as good of a place to start as any. Two decades of vacuuming up the personal data of users of various online services has created the most impressive marketing capabilities in history, but these profiles have astounding potential for damage when they are used the wrong way or fall into the wrong hands.

 

Unauthorized information that is captured in data breaches tends to find its way to massive “combo lists” that are sold and traded on the dark web. Social security numbers are added from this breach, home addresses and phone numbers from that one, personal health information from yet another. Soon, a frighteningly complete profile of millions of individuals is available to anyone willing to pay the asking price.

 

These are just the established data privacy issues. The emerging ones are even worse. High-quality facial recognition technology is just beginning to roll out across the public places of some countries. Artificial intelligence is not only making mass facial recognition possible, but magnifies the power and reach of any application that involves capturing and sorting information: scanning pictures, analyzing speech, sifting through text and location data. This threatens to not only shatter anonymity and privacy, but allow for highly advanced impersonation and take the concept of “identity theft” to new levels.

 

Some businesses chafe at the trouble and added expense of new and emerging data privacy regulations, but they are vital to both protecting rights and privacy and instilling confidence in end users. Customers want to be able to submit their payment information without worry about data breaches and identity theft, use services without wondering what is being done with their personal information and use devices without fear of surveillance or having location data tracked. The need for meaningful safeguards only grows greater as technological capabilities increase.

 

New Polling Reveals Increasingly Negative Views of Big Tech, Strong Public Support for Regulation

As of 2019, Big Tech companies were not particularly popular as a new poll shows that negative views have increased…

5 days ago

2018 California Net Neutrality Law Finally Clear to Be Enforced in Wake of Unsuccessful Challenge by Internet Providers

California’s 2018 net neutrality law will now be enforced after a challenge by the state's biggest internet providers was shot…

6 days ago

Amping Data Security Can Boost Your Privacy Strategy

Regulatory bodies around the world will continue to implement rules and penalties related to maintaining privacy. The NIST Privacy Framework…

6 days ago

Facial Recognition Systems Scan 23 Million People at US Borders, Come up With Zero Imposters

23 million border crossers entering the United States were subject to facial recognition scans in 2020. Of these, it appears…

2 weeks ago

TikTok Faces Barrage of New Complaints From EU Consumer Protection Groups

A consumer protection group has filed complaints against the social media giant: failure to protect children, unfair terms of video…

2 weeks ago

PRC Spying, Malware and Disinformation Campaigns Push Hong Kong Dissidents to Underground Communications Channels

Report finds that aggressive disinformation campaigns and related measures have forced Hong Kong organizers to move to the digital underground,…

2 weeks ago

Singapore Government Plan To Install Monitoring App on Student Computers Meets With Resistance From Privacy Groups, NGOs

Singapore’s free student computers will come packed with a potentially unwelcome addition: a monitoring app that allows teachers to view…

3 weeks ago

Post COVID-19: Trends for the Next Normal

Even if the battle is won against COVID-19, the next normal will be different. Here are some lessons learned and…

3 weeks ago

Facebook Fight With Apple Over iOS 14 Escalates To a Possible Antitrust Lawsuit

Facebook and Apple have been going back and forth over changes made to iOS 14 for the benefit of user…

3 weeks ago

Canada’s Privacy Commissioner Rules That Clearview AI Facial Recognition Software Violates Privacy Laws, Must Delete Biometrics From Its Database

Already unwelcome in parts of the US, Clearview AI has been shown the door in Canada. The controversial facial recognition…

3 weeks ago