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corporate_surveillance [2015/03/15 11:28]
bkeyser_mail.roosevelt.edu
corporate_surveillance [2015/04/26 19:35] (current)
bkeyser_mail.roosevelt.edu Added Final work
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 ===== Alternate Computers ===== ===== Alternate Computers =====
 If a user decides to use another computer, on another connection, to connect to a service, there is no way for a service to determine that the two connections were by the same user unless the user logs in or otherwise provides identifying information. If a user decides to use another computer, on another connection, to connect to a service, there is no way for a service to determine that the two connections were by the same user unless the user logs in or otherwise provides identifying information.
 +
 +====== Implications ======
 +
 +The mass collection of data from users has lead to many different changes in our interaction with companies, our expectations of privacy and what we expect out of businesses that we interact with.
 +
 +===== Ease of use/​Customization =====
 +
 +Due to the large sets of data that corporations have on the average consumer, they can customize the experience that said user has, in order to make the user more likely to purchase from them. This can range anywhere from saving the user’s location so they don’t have to fill it out again, to adjusting the displayed deals based on such things as the browser/​computer being used.((http://​www.wsj.com/​articles/​SB10001424052702304458604577488822667325882)) One specific, unusual example is “No CAPTCHA”, a Google innovation that adapts their “reCAPTCHA” captcha engine such that most users will only need to click a single button to bypass the captcha, while still providing a barrier for automated scripts.(( http://​googleonlinesecurity.blogspot.com/​2014/​12/​are-you-robot-introducing-no-captcha.html)) ​
 +
 +In general, this is mostly benign, but when news sources direct information that a consumer would agree with to them, while deprioritizing articles which they would disagree with, leads to something the experts call the “echo-chamber effect”.(( http://​www.nytimes.com/​roomfordebate/​2011/​04/​21/​barack-obama-and-the-psychology-of-the-birther-myth/​the-echo-chamber-effect)) This effect can lead to bad information spreading across a group with no one questioning it, reinforced by the internet news companies that are serving each side with their own side’s articles, commentary and talking points. ​
 +
 +===== Price Discrimination =====
 +
 +Online storefronts have been shown to be subtly adjusting prices based on gathered information,​ such as location or purchase history.((http://​www.slate.com/​articles/​business/​moneybox/​2010/​12/​how_much_is_that_doggie_in_the_browser_window.single.html)) Sometimes, the usage is benign, such as when a company charges different shipping costs based on location or when prices vary due to varying levels of subsidies by different states, but companies can use their gathered data to determine if you would be willing to pay a higher price, then charge you the (calculated) maximum you would be willing to pay. Location-based price discrimination – charging people different prices based on calculated location – has been shown to be implemented by online retailers, as well. ((http://​www.wsj.com/​articles/​SB10001424127887323777204578189391813881534))
 +
 +===== Privacy concerns =====
 +
 +The mass collection of data has lead to an erosion of the expectation of privacy. For most of our interactions online, it is no longer expected that the interaction will remain private, or that no one else can access the exchanged data. A common exhortation regarding online information is, “Don’t put anything online you wouldn’t want put on a billboard with your name on it”. ​
 +
 +Due to the potential for harvesting information from many aspects of the browsing experience, a wide variety of tricks and tools to prevent or interfere with tracking have been developed. An incomplete list is above, in the “Defense” section.
 +
 +==== False privacy in HTTPS ====
 +
 +Some users think that HTTPS security, indicated in browsers by a lock icon and green in the address bar – the specific design depends on their browser – is enough to keep their interactions private. HTTPS, when properly implemented and executed, does prevent third-parties from accessing their communications between their computer and the website. Thus, it is perfect for logins, purchases, and other situations in which the data contains critical information that should be kept from third-parties. However, it provides no protection against the owner of the site. The data leaves its secure package as soon as it reaches the website, and the site’s owner can do whatever they want with it. As such, HTTPS provides little-to-no security against corporate data collection, because said data collection is carried out by the corporations that own the sites you connect to.
 +
 +===== Behavior changes =====
 +
 +Social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, has lead to deep changes in how much people are willing to share, and to whom they are willing to share it. Material that people would not tell strangers they meet on the street or in a party, those same people are sharing with the whole world on their social media pages. This development is being lead by the social media companies themselves, who are pushing people to share everything about their lives in order to collect more information that they can use to advertise to their users. ​
 +
 +As a result of this move to social media, said sites have become “hubs” of people’s social lives, such that someone could have their entire social experience take place on social media sites. For example, these sites are becoming a critical part of the social playing field in schools, where social standing plays an important role in many students’ lives. The deluge of data produced by the sharing of users lives has lead to highly personal advertisements being marketed to the fractions of the population to whom the ads would be maximally effective. ​
 +
 +Such personalized advertisements are becoming increasingly common. One experiment on the topic was carried out by a marketer as a prank against his roommate, and involved the marketer creating a series of custom ads that referenced personal details about his friend, while still being just vague enough that the ad could be conceivably be targeted to others, as well. Up until the marketer made a mistake and referenced an inside joke, the roommate had no idea that he was being uniquely targeted.(( http://​mysocialsherpa.com/​the-ultimate-retaliation-pranking-my-roommate-with-targeted-facebook-ads/​))
 +
corporate_surveillance.txt · Last modified: 2015/04/26 19:35 by bkeyser_mail.roosevelt.edu