Big Brother Is Ogling
Were you aware that your personal information—everything from your shopping habits to your health history—can be available to creditors, employers, landlords, insurers, law enforcement agencies, and, of course, criminals? All they need to do is tap into the public and private databases that gather, buy, and sell your vital statistics!
A new survey from the Annenberg School for Communications found that a majority of Americans don't like companies mining their data in exchange for discounts or personalized services, but are resigned to it happening. Of those surveyed, 91 percent said they disagreed that it was fair for companies to collect information about them without them knowing about it if the companies give them discounts. On another question, 71 percent disagreed or with a store monitoring what they do online while there if they provide free Wi-Fi. And 55 percent disagreed that it's okay for a store where they shop to use information it has about them to create a picture of them that improves the services they are provided.
Similarly, when they were asked about controlling their data, 84 percent agreed that they want to have control over what marketers can learn about them online, but 65 percent agreed that they've come to accept that they have little control over it. Companies are saying that people give up their data because they understand they are getting something for those data. But what is really going on is a sense of resignation. Americans feel that they have no control over what companies do with their information or how they collect it.
Do you think what companies say is true, that people give up their personal data because they understand they're getting something for it, or do you think people don't even realize most of the time their data is being collected, and even if they do, feel they have little control over it being collected or what's done with it? Let me know your thoughts.