Social networking and the paradoxical world of privacy


social network privacy

Social Networking sites such as face book, twitter and Google, you tube, the list is endless, these sites are designed to micro-blog, to document ones life, to interpret his/hers likings and disliking and everyday happenings and in all of this we people are freely willing to give up personal information to join social networks hence the phrase people live in a paradoxical world of privacy, and teens and young adults are more likely give information than that of a mature adult.

As we know the Internet and social networking tools have almost become indispensable. These day the government agencies and marketers are doing nothing but collecting personal data about us, on our every movement, our whereabouts and our lifestyles. They can make entire assumptions of our characteristics just by a few details. Big brother is watching us, and that’s no phrase that’s a reality check. They can access your name, your picture, your gender, your current location, your list of friends, all the pages you have Liked, the comments you say, your tweets your emails. Facebook, Twitter and Google have been caught snooping on messages sent across their networks. Social networking sites have become a tool to gather personal information, be in people from the royal family, top celebrities or the vast ordinary people like us.

Just look at Facebook, it has essentially become a worldwide photo identification database, and that it can actually recognise you before you tag the next photo up therefore you can be easily identified in a huge crowd. Much of our information we give are sensitive and potentially damaging, it doesn’t require special access to uncover:

  • 4.7 million “liked” a Facebook page about health conditions or treatments (details an insurer might use against you)
  • 4.8 million have used Facebook to say where they planned to go on a certain day (a potential tip-off for burglars)
  • 20.4 million included their birth date, which can be used by identity thieves; 39.3 million identified family members in their profile
  • 900K discussed finances on their wall
  • 1.6 million liked a page pertaining to racial or ethnic affiliations
  • 2.3 million liked a page regarding sexual orientation
  • 7.7 million liked a page pertaining to a religious affiliation
  • 2.6 million discussed their recreational use of alcohol on their wall
  • 4.6 million discussed their love life on their wall.

What’s more to add to this list and we are all guilty of doing this, you might be even be doing this right now. We assume what we are doing is just interacting, yet we are not opening our eyes to reality that the information we give out there is potentially dangerous information in breach of our privacy. This have made the average life of an individual  to look at, to change and to tread on, yet we easily give away our social security numbers, street address, phone number, financial information. Why?

Before I step on mucky waters, I have to say I’m a huge fan of the NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden, who has revealed how far the U.S. and UK governments are willing to go to spy on us using all kind of methods and why wouldn’t I like him. Society should be grateful for these types of people and many others are exposing the illegal spying programs and how they have been indiscriminately spying on millions of people across the nations, it is these people who have traded their everyday lives to live in jeopardy on being killed in the next move just so we can be aware of what is happening and the manipulation tools that are being used by the government and technological companies to control us.

But in all of this we need to look at the bigger picture, its all about collecting data on each individual on this planet, and in this we have become our own monitors but yet another crucial fact is that its also a reminder that profit comes before privacy every day for some businesses and hopefully one day we would realize that we are giving privacy away to strangers who are using our data to make themselves rich. Its not you whose profiting from this it’s the likes of Mark Zuckerberg. These people working for big corporations and governments will do anything to access us even if its means buying the next best platforms we use.

So how much is too much, how can we protect ourselves and the future generations from becoming the next targets, does it lie in public awareness and education, we have to remember that this is the age of digital media and privacy will always be a concern in social networks. Links will be provided on how we can avoid situations and protect our selves from becoming rats being watched from another screen.

Below is a summary which I came across and interested me, the the link can be found on deanjshaw.files.wordpress.com

Published by Maria’m AS

online-privacy

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About Maria'm AS (31 Articles)
Imagination is the key to writing. Editor, publisher and researcher.

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