Does Data Privacy really exists?

Source — Freepik

We live in a world where we blindly accept the terms and conditions before installing an application, just forgetting about its repercussions which may exists. It is actually the lengthy detail with respect to the conditions that forces us to skip the reading part and just accept them. This is the part where the actual monitoring starts on the pretext of providing personalized and relevant information.

Data is a strong tool in the current business environment and plays a significant role in deciding the success of a business. Many companies make use of ‘Cookies’ to track our activities on their website. It helps to improve our experience by providing the the right recommendations and suggestions based on our search feeds and activity. However, the companies are obliged to provide the required security to the personal and confidential information.

The trust in Data Privacy measures taken by the companies has started to decline. Our information is no longer safe on the internet and the repetitive data breaches of various companies only adds fire to the fuel. Example- Air India just faced a data breach of its 4.5 million customers and the personal data of the passengers was compromised (I too made it to the list).

The lucrative opportunity of earning huge amounts just by sharing users personal data to the third parties is exploited by many companies which hampers users belief in them and tarnishes their image. This is quite common in various marketing and political campaigns where the user data and insight is a game-changer. The users need to be provided with complete disclosure of how the data collected will be used in future and users confidentiality will be respected.

Facebook is a famous social media platform which is known for networking with various people and nowadays even more famous for sharing our personal information with third parties. Facebook interacts with its users through various means based on stored user data. It is often we are reminded of our friend’s birthdays about which we are generally forgetful, the ‘Memories’ which displays the content posted by us few years back on the same day to refresh our celebrated moments. It reminds us of the virtual friendships by describing like celebrating 10 years since 2011 with Michael.

The major revenue producing part for Facebook is advertising where it provides us personalized advertisements. Therefore, it is quite common we search for a brand new Iphone12 and the next morning our Facebook and Instagram is flooded with advertisements of Iphone providing us the best deals. The Whatsapp, Instagram and Facebook are integrated and data is used across platforms. Whatsapp is recently been asking for permission in India where they can even see our messages.

Facebook has been involved in a number of scandals over the last years which respect to privacy issues and was entitled to pay compensation in some cases like 500,000 pounds by UK’s Information Commissioner’s office for the role in Cambridge Analytica scam. There are other allegations like selling user data to Chinese companies like Lenovo and Huawei , influencing election related activities by Donald Trump and many others which cannot be ignored. However, a lot of people can still ignore the Donald Trump part because he likes to play the blame game and does not wish to take any accountability.

A picture of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg went viral earlier where there can be seen a tape posted on his webcam which gives an insight about our safety in this virtual life.

Source — dailymail.co.uk

A place where the Facebook founder does not find himself safe then what can we expect from ourselves? This is the question we need to address. The government regulations and norms are in place but they are not strong enough to make the big Tech giant like Facebook be held accountable and they always find a safe passage. The continuous tracking and monitoring of a person’s activity cannot be solely justified on the pretext of providing better customer experience the whole time.

Reference

Phadnis, Aneesh. “UK Regulator Probes Air India’s Data Leak Impacting 4.5 Mn Passengers.” Business Standard, Business-Standard, 25 May 2021, www.business-standard.com/article/companies/uk-regulator-probes-air-india-s-data-leak-impacting-4-5-mn-passengers-121052501361_1.html.

About the Author: Omer Minkara Omer Minkara is the Vice President, and Omer Minkara is the Vice President. “Using Customer Data for Marketing: The Good, Bad & Ugly.” Aberdeen Strategy & Research, 10 Dec. 2018, www.aberdeen.com/cmo-essentials/good-bad-ugly-using-customer-data-for-marketing/.

Staff, TechRepublic, and Dan Patterson. “Facebook Data Privacy Scandal: A Cheat Sheet.” TechRepublic, TechRepublic, 30 July 2020, www.techrepublic.com/article/facebook-data-privacy-scandal-a-cheat-sheet/.