I spotted a this article the other day. As readers here know, I have some concerns about online privacy and this is yet another violation in the increasingly long list of them.
The article speaks for itself, but here are a few quotes that I hope will have you rethinking about your personal information.
Operating in the shadows of the online marketplace, specialized tech companies you’ve likely never heard of are tapping vast troves of our personal data to generate secret “surveillance scores” — digital mug shots of millions of Americans — that supposedly predict our future behavior. The firms sell their scoring services to major businesses across the U.S. economy.
Large employers use HireVue, a firm that generates an “employability” score about candidates by analyzing “tens of thousands of factors,” including a person’s facial expressions and voice intonations.
Wireless customers predicted to be less profitable are sometimes forced to endure longer customer service hold times.
pharmaceutical companies, health-care providers and insurance companies can use those scores to, among other things, “match the right patient investment level to the right patients.”
Surveillance scoring is the product of two trends. First is the rampant (and mostly unregulated) collection of every intimate detail about our lives, amassed by the nanosecond from smartphones to cars, toasters to toys.
So what is a lowly citizen like me to do?
There are some steps one can take and I am investigating them. I will keep you posted about these. The first thing we can do is just be aware of what is happening – hence this post.
Secondly, let’s please understand that the largest tech firms, specifically Facebook and Google base their businesses on selling your data. Always keep in mind that if a service is free, the product is you!