A uKnow White Paper
by Tim Woda,
co‐founder of uKnow.com, Inc.
The Decline of Online Privacy
And the rise of personal iden...
1
Overview
Nearly every interaction someone has on the Internet adds to
an ever-growing collection of online data about th...
2
THE DIGITAL SELF IS
AND BECOMING MORE
DIFFICULT TO MANAGE
3
The Maturing Digital Self and the
Expanding Digital Footprint
The interaction between individuals and the Internet has
b...
4
the entire world to see. Those photos and posts aren’t just on
the servers of those sites. Search engines index them and...
5
MARKETERS VIEW
CONSUMER DATA AS
A VALUABLE ASSET
6
Marketer’s Want More
and Better Consumer Data
Personal data is a valuable asset that can be leveraged, bought,
and sold ...
7
GOVERNMENTS
VIEW PERSONAL
DATA AS A TOOL
FOR SURVEILLANCE
8
Governments Want More
and Better Individual Data
Governments are increasingly using the data of individuals for
law enfo...
9
THE FUTURE OF
PERSONAL
IDENTITY
MANAGEMENT
10
The Movement Towards
Personal Identity Management
As the public becomes more anxious about privacy and the
security of ...
11
Conclusion
We are in the age of Big Data where companies and
government entities treat personal data about individuals ...
12
About uKnow
At uKnow, we strive to help families protect their personal
data and information from being misused to inva...
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The Decline of Online Privacy - a whitepaper

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The Decline of Online Privacy and the rise of personal identity management in the age of big data

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Transcript of "The Decline of Online Privacy - a whitepaper"

  1. 1. A uKnow White Paper by Tim Woda, co‐founder of uKnow.com, Inc. The Decline of Online Privacy And the rise of personal identity management in the age of big data
  2. 2. 1 Overview Nearly every interaction someone has on the Internet adds to an ever-growing collection of online data about them. With the explosive growth of social networking and online tools that help make our lives more fun and convenient, individuals have created an online version of themselves – their digital self. There are many problems that result from having a digital self that becomes increasingly well-defined every day. Because there is no such thing as anonymous data, businesses and government entities are able to use anyone’s digital self to identify the real person behind the data. High-profile data breaches and issues arising over who actually owns the data have raised important questions about online privacy and the security of personal information. There is a growing sense of fear and powerlessness among the public as businesses and governments continue to gather more and more personal data. This paper discusses concerns about the loss of personal privacy, the age of the digital self, and the future of personal identity management. There is a sense of fear and powerlessness among the public as businesses and governments continue to gather more and more personal data.
  3. 3. 2 THE DIGITAL SELF IS AND BECOMING MORE DIFFICULT TO MANAGE
  4. 4. 3 The Maturing Digital Self and the Expanding Digital Footprint The interaction between individuals and the Internet has brought new phrases into our vocabulary – digital self and digital footprint. The digital self is the amalgamation of the personal data generated while creating, exchanging, and receiving digital information through the Internet. Emails, texts, online searches, photos, blog posts, requests for driving directions, website logins, account profiles, game logins, social check-ins, video streaming, music streaming, and financial transactions all blend together to create a digital self that is an ever- sharpening image of the Internet user. Any time an individual uses social media, mobile devices, and apps that generate GPS data they leave behind a digital footprint. By combining bits of location data from various sources, companies and government entities can accurately determine that individual’s exact physical location. They can also keep a record of where that individual has been, when they were there, and where the will likely go next. The Internet never forgets The Internet records everything and forgets nothing. The trail of data that gives birth to and shapes the digital self exists permanently. Inappropriate public posts and photos on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+ are there for The digital self is the amalgamation of the personal data generated while creating, exchanging, and receiving digital information through the Internet.
  5. 5. 4 the entire world to see. Those photos and posts aren’t just on the servers of those sites. Search engines index them and can be found at any time in the future by anyone. Even posts and photos that were intended to be private may be discovered. There is no such thing as anonymous data One of the best lessons that there is no such thing as anonymous data comes from Netflix. In 2006, the online video streaming company released 100 million “anonymous” subscriber records containing movie ratings made by those subscribers. Shortly after the release of the data, researchers were able to identify people in the database by name, and with a high degree of accuracy. They were able to do this even with a small number of movie ratings. Whether “anonymous” data is shared for well-intentioned reasons or for profit, it is best to assume that someone somewhere can use it to identify a specific individual. Individuals have no control over their data According to a report by Forrester Research, over the next few years we will see Internet search engines, financial service companies, health companies, entertainment companies, and technology startups competing in a free-for-all to collect and profit from individual’s data. What’s missing from this equation is the individual supplying the data. That’s because individuals do not own the data they have shared. Terms of Use statements on websites may detail how the company intends to use collected data. However, the statements make it clear that they own the data shared or collected from users of the site.
  6. 6. 5 MARKETERS VIEW CONSUMER DATA AS A VALUABLE ASSET
  7. 7. 6 Marketer’s Want More and Better Consumer Data Personal data is a valuable asset that can be leveraged, bought, and sold just like any other traditional asset. That’s why companies in every market space are doing everything they can to collect more – and better – consumer data. Personal data has enormous value. In the U.S. alone, companies spend more than $2 billion per year on acquiring third-party data about individuals. That amount is in addition to the billions spent on market research and the creation of data derived from other data. From their point of view, companies are seeking to better understand what consumers want and need. They believe that the more detailed data they have, the better they will be able to create more desirable products, become more efficient marketers, and increase brand loyalty. In the age of Big Data, whoever controls the personal data of an individual controls the marketing relationship. Marketers with more, fresher, and better data win because they are in a better position to guess what an individual is interested in purchasing when, why, and how. With that knowledge, they can direct more effective marketing toward the individual. Even though commerce fuels our economic system, the refinement of marketing tactics must be counterbalanced by the privacy of each individual. In the age of Big Data, whoever controls the personal data of an individual controls the marketing relationship.
  8. 8. 7 GOVERNMENTS VIEW PERSONAL DATA AS A TOOL FOR SURVEILLANCE
  9. 9. 8 Governments Want More and Better Individual Data Governments are increasingly using the data of individuals for law enforcement and national security purposes. All mobile devices and vehicles using GPS capabilities are essentially tracking devices. However, citizens would never knowingly agree to carry a government-issued tracking device. Citizens would rebel if the government required that they report when they made a new online friend, when they “Liked” a friend’s photo, or where they ate lunch. No one would stand for being compelled to deliver to the government the content of texts, emails, and Skype calls. Even though such requirements don’t seem realistic in a Democratic society, governments already have access to this information. That’s because governments can use the Internet as a mass surveillance and intelligence-gathering network. If they can’t access the information directly, they can easily get it from the company’s that collect it. In 2011, the Brookings Institute reported that because of rapidly declining storage costs, it is technologically and financially feasible for governments to record nearly every phone conversation, electronic message, social media interaction, and the movements of nearly every person and vehicle. There is an urgent need to balance the aims of law enforcement and national security with the expectation of individual privacy. Governments can use the Internet as a mass surveillance and intelligence- gathering network.
  10. 10. 9 THE FUTURE OF PERSONAL IDENTITY MANAGEMENT
  11. 11. 10 The Movement Towards Personal Identity Management As the public becomes more anxious about privacy and the security of their personal data, companies must respond with personal identity management solutions. Effective personal identity management puts individuals in control of their identity data, transactional data, web- browsing history, location data, and all user-created data. The newly empowered individual will be able to decide how, when, why, and with whom they share their personal data. In this new data economy, personal data management will evolve from new rules that govern how individuals, companies, and government entities collect, use, and share personal information. There will be clearly stated rights and responsibilities as well as accountability and enforcement. Fortunately, there is currently a move led by consumer advocacy groups and forward-thinking companies in the identity theft industry toward creating effective personal identity management systems. There is also an increasing consumer awareness of what’s at stake. Companies that understand that the real value of personal data is in how it empowers the consumer will be the leaders in developing personal identity management systems. Those companies will create an entirely new competitive advantage over companies that don’t learn how to play by the new rules. By empowering the individual with comprehensive personal identity management systems, companies will be able to attract users who demand privacy, security, accountability, and a clear understanding of how their data will be used. In this new data economy, personal data management will evolve from new rules that govern how individuals, companies, and government entities collect, use, and share personal information.
  12. 12. 11 Conclusion We are in the age of Big Data where companies and government entities treat personal data about individuals as a valuable asset to be collected, bought, sold, and used for purposes that were never foreseen by the individual sharing the data. A system of personal identity management must be developed to empower individuals to protect their digital footprint and decide how much of their digital self they want to share. The hallmark of a trustworthy personal identity management system will have the following components: Security: Personal data will be protected against both intentional and unintentional misuse and security breaches. Data Rights and Responsibilities: There will be easy- to-understand statements of rights and responsibilities that ensure the integrity of the personal identity management system. Accountability and Enforcement: Clear rules will hold companies and government agencies accountable for securing and using personal data. A system of personal identity management must be developed to empower individuals to protect their digital footprint and decide how much of their digital selves they want to share.
  13. 13. 12 About uKnow At uKnow, we strive to help families protect their personal data and information from being misused to invade their privacy, impact their reputation, steal their identity, or threaten their safety. Our flagship product, uKnowKids, helps protect kids from the dangers of the Internet with uniquely intelligent tools. Unlike other parental control software, uKnowKids enables parents to “have their child’s back” without constantly looking over their shoulder. By giving parents the information they need to educate their children about staying safe online and the access to smarter tools to supervise them in a digital world, uKnowKids helps make the Internet safer for kids and less intimidating for parents. uKnow powers smart tools that connect and protect digital families.

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