What Does It Really Matter If Companies Are Tracking Us Online?

Discussion in 'privacy general' started by lotuseclat79, Aug 17, 2013.

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  1. lotuseclat79

    lotuseclat79 Registered Member

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  2. MarcP

    MarcP Registered Member

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    The article says "a hotel you book at will know about your allergies and prepares your room with a hypoallergenic pillow".

    To that, I also add "or deny you access because of your allergies and not worth the potential liability or hassle to accommodate". Then let the other hotels know about you.

    I guess the author of the article (who appears to be seriously asking that question) has never heard of data intrusion/theft. If it can be amassed into one big pot of data, it can be attacked and stolen.

    So it's not really the gathering of data that concerns me, it's trusting them with the data... which then morphs into a concern about data gathering,
     
  3. mirimir

    mirimir Registered Member

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    We're being monitored, tracked and profiled by both corporations and governments. The goals and methods are different. Corporations want to show us ads that appeal to us, so we'll buy their stuff. Governments want to identify threats, find criminals, etc.

    Corporations use cookies and other Web tracking methods, and also scan traffic for relevant words (Gmail etc). They also track our health and credit histories. Some governments try to intercept all traffic, and use global clusters of powerful packet-inspection devices to permit real-time indexing and segregation. Some traffic is analyzed immediately, and the rest is segregated for short- to long-term storage.

    One might argue that corporate tracking doesn't really harm us, or at least not very much. What's frightening is the possibility that criminals and/or governments will obtain corporate tracking data.

    Many citizens of "free" countries apparently don't worry about tracking by their own governments. However, it's impossible to predict how our profiles (combined corporate and government tracking) might be used in the future.
     
  4. Techwiz

    Techwiz Registered Member

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    The issue of data mining really comes down to ethics and morals. A lot of folks tend to confuse the two as being the same thing. With data mining, it seems ethical for organizations to collect information about their customers. In fact, this concept would be conducive to a stronger free market system. But I think the majority of us feel it is immoral for a company to spy on its customers and manipulate their thought processes. If we interchange company with government, the picture rapidly changes. We see the governments actions as being both unethical and immoral. I think data-mining is so widely unopposed legally because it is mutually beneficial for both companies and governments. It is for this reason that corporate tracking must be scrutinized and opposed. We can only guess how much of this information is being resold and shared between the various entities involved. We have a right to privacy, and this double standard of saying its okay for group A, but not group B is absurd. Laws need to be enforced absolutely, without exception. That's not to say that the consequences or punishments should not be adjusted accordingly.
     
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