Declaring personal data bankruptcy and the cost of privacy

Discussion in 'privacy problems' started by ronjor, Feb 19, 2015.

  1. ronjor

    ronjor Global Moderator

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    http://www.net-security.org/article.php?id=2224
     
  2. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    The author has a point. But he ignores a crucial distinction. When most people use "privacy tools", they arguably have some goal in mind. They're in China, perhaps, and they want to use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or some other site that the GFW blocks. Or they're in Indonesia, and want to watch NetFlix. And so on. It's not that they're privacy nuts. They just want something.

    Conversely, they apparently aren't overly concerned about sharing personal information with retailers and such. Maybe there's just no obvious downside. There have historically been downsides to government surveillance, however. And Americans have a thing about the Bill of Rights (fairy tale or not).

    Anyway, some of us privacy nuts go out of our way to feign personal data bankruptcy. But in a very strategic way. Move along. Nothing to see here. Yes?
     
  3. ronjor

    ronjor Global Moderator

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    Where as there are many that never give a second thought or simply don't know what is involved in "spilling the privacy beans"
     
  4. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    Yes. But at the risk of making it sound too easy, it's really not that hard. And I believe that everyone does it, in some way or another. Many of us dress appropriately for the situation, and we avoid inappropriate topics of conversation. That is, we pass, with some goal in mind. Maybe it's getting a job. Maybe it's finding companionship. Maybe it's avoiding hard time.

    It's but a small jump to other sorts of strategic subterfuge. Acting normal, and doing it without apparent pretense, is a learned skill. For example, some years ago, returning from Amsterdam, just after exiting customs, I discovered a joint in my shirt pocket. Having entirely forgotten about it, nothing about my behavior had drawn attention to it. Had I been hiding something, it would have required some skill to act so innocently.

    Conversely, some privacy nuts attract too much attention, and so compromise their privacy, by acting like privacy nuts. It's one thing to buy stuff for cash strategically, maybe a phone, or a netbook, or a gift card. And doing that, it's prudent to memorize a false telephone number and email address, and (just in case) a false (but valid) street address. But blatant privacy-nut behavior, such as always paying cash or getting defensive about providing a telephone number, are read flags.

    The online aspects require more technical knowledge and expertise. But the same basic concepts apply.
     
  5. RockLobster

    RockLobster Registered Member

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    I think it is almost impossible to be anonymous with a cell phone especially if you are a target for surveillance, as soon as someone you call adds you to their phones contact list by your name or you call someone who is a known associate of yours its game over.
     
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