Is Data Privacy an Illusion for Convenience

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With the evolution of technology, privacy has become a big word and a scary word for everyone. Technology dates back to the beginning of humans, the only difference is the format that technology has taken, whilst our ancestors had their reservations about farming tools or bows and arrows , privacy was not necessarily a word you associated with technology. Move in into the now, privacy is now everything associated with technology.

Enter www and everything associated with technology. Everyone wants to know if I post something on the internet is it private. From the definition of “private” we understand that privacy is a sense of belonging to yourself and being something that is yours. In other words one must be free from public attention. This is where it gets tricky.

If you are on the superhighway you are seen by everyone but you still need your privacy? Using that analogy, if I am driving in my car in the highway people do not have the right to take my car or see what is inside, and if they can somehow see what is in the car they should not take pictures and spread them?

The argument is on data privacy, what I do and take part in should not become someone else’s business my own. However here is the dilemma, who is everyone? Facebook and Google as examples know your every habit and your every selections, messages,c licks and preference. That data is stored somewhere, where the corporate (who are people like you and me) have access to the data. This data is conveniently used to show you what “you like” as you browse he internet or the platforms. In this case privacy is a an agreement between you and the corporate to ensure that they keep your data private but private to who? When you access someone else’s platform which is not yours you are accepting their terms and conditions which means that they then have the right to keep your information which is where it get tricky as well. The right to be forgotten is an interesting development with google, in which in April 2018, google lost a court case in which the person in question won the right for their search results to be forgotten from search results.

Right to be Forgotten

So yes the rights are forgotten from search results but are the information still remains.Going back to the analogy of driving on a superhighway, yes you can see what is in my car but you have no right to then talk about it because it’s in my car. Security by any means is the ability to safeguard information from people who are not then able to keep secrecy of information they come around. Those who keep our information have a trust based on a contract hence we allow them to keep the information.

The question that will keep being asked as technology advances is, “Is Privacy really real or an illusion of agreement” At what point is my information private and to who is the question. Once one is in the superhighway there will always be someone who accesses your information and if they decide to keep it secret so be it. My accountant can be confidential to me but not private to me, there is thin line. We have a lot of confidential accounts but privacy requires strong agreements.

Privacy Agreement

As you go through a website or bank or any place where you submit your information the view is that it is confidential but the hope is the your data remains private to you, hence a seal of trust is expected between you and the person taking custody of your data. Data of habit can easily be reconstructed from someone’s profile activity hence privacy is not really applicable however when we make it confidential and limit who has access to it we hope it stays private to that agreement that we have with the custodian.


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