Response to Lei’s presentation of “The end of Online Privacy”

15 Mar

On Friday the 9th I listened to Lei talk about his article he analyzed.  The Article The End of Online Privacy talks about how big websites and companies are getting an inside look at who you are as well as how through smartphone apps your information and privacy of everything related to your phone is compromised through the way you are forced to accept the terms of use with many applications.  With companies like Google who have so much sway with how technology is used it is hard to keep tabs on what they are doing at all times.  A big problem now is Google’s newly updated privacy policy that connects a lot of the information from their monopolies is being utilized to target advertisements more precisely to your interests.  Lei pointed out an example in the article that I thought was interesting of a story of a service Target has on their website where target will predict a 25 item list it thinks you would be interested in based on past information.  This apparently was a big controversy when a pregnant teenage girl who had yet to reveal to her father she was pregnant was receiving coupons in the mail for pregnancy related items based on her online purchases.  The fact that everything you search on Google is not erasable is a scary thought.  Eve if you delete your cookies Google still has that information saved on a server.  It is truly hard to be anonymous anymore, you have to really know what your doing to hide your tracks.  Going back to this cellphone app is a more serious risk than people realize.  Giving access to your information by just pressing that OK button is risky in that companies can access your contacts, credit card info related to the purchase of the app and if a hacker gets into their information it can be very detrimental to you.  You are able to get viruses on your phone just like your home computer now.  Hackers can set up fake apps that can burn out your phone completely or steal your information with just that single push of a button.  Thanks Lei for sharing this article, it is good to take a step back every so often and get the bigger picture of how things are working in the world. 

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3 Responses to “Response to Lei’s presentation of “The end of Online Privacy””

  1. Ben Rimes March 16, 2012 at 9:58 PM #

    As awful as the privacy concerns get in the United States, they don’t seem to be able to hold a candle to what’s happening in China. Having your search history catalogued and packed away in the Google servers might seem invasive, but at least you still have the option to create accounts that may or may not indicate who you actually are.

    In some countries, that is increasingly becoming something you can’t do, with a recent move by China to mandate that all users of microblogging services (like Twitter or Sina Weibo) register with their actual identification cards or mobile numbers, meaning they can’t even publish to the web privately (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/9147767/China-moves-to-control-Sina-Weibo-social-network.html).

    Good thoughts here, thanks for sharing.

    • lockmantuj March 21, 2012 at 10:19 PM #

      I’ve heard that Korea, if not already implemented, is in the process of requiring all internet users to have an identification. Seems that such measures can’t help but stifle free expression.

  2. lei_187 March 18, 2012 at 6:17 PM #

    Thank you for the kind words! Be careful the next time you shop on Taget.com 😛

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