Skip to content

OPLIN 4cast #508: Internet privacy. Whatev.

Posted in 4cast

Last updated on September 30, 2016

Online privacy is a really large-scale issue. Yet, often we turn a blind eye, either purposefully or inadvertently. Many of us will shout that privacy is important to us, yet we post all sorts of personally-identifiable information.  We’re seemingly privacy hypocrites. (It’s so much easier not to consider our privacy, right?) Or, if we do think about our online privacy, we may trade it knowingly away, depending on what the tradeoff is.  It appears that the issue is large, messy and fast-evolving. Here’s just some of what’s been happening recently…if you want to think about it.

  • App vs. website: Which best protects your privacy? (Northeastern University, September 12, 2016) “The answer? ‘It depends,’ says Choffnes, a mobile systems expert in the College of Computer and Information Science. ‘We expected that apps would leak more identifiers because apps have more direct access to that information. And overall that’s true. But we found that typically apps leak just one more identifier than a website for the same service. In fact, we found that in 40 percent of cases websites leak more types of information than apps.'”
  • In a connected world, privacy becomes a group effort (Penn State, May 11, 2016) “In a study, the researchers found that social media users act autonomously on some privacy issues, but are interdependent when information is co-owned by multiple users. As soon as individuals share information with their online social networks, they no longer have sole control over the information, but must rely on others for privacy protection, said Jia.”
  • No Right To Privacy For Internet Users: Big Brother Gets Federal Court Approval (Cal Jeffrey, Inquisitr, July 2, 2016) “Internet users apparently have no legal right to privacy. Senior U.S. District Judge Henry Coke Morgan Jr. has ruled that ‘people should have no expectation of privacy on their home PCs because no connected computer ‘is immune from invasion,’ reports eWeek.”
  • The New Privacy Cop Patrolling the Internet ( Jon Leibowitz & Jonathan Nuechterlein, Fortune, May 10, 2016) “As our online footprints grow in size and scope, it is more important than ever for Internet companies to protect us against hackers and disclose how they use our personal data. The Federal Trade Commission was long the main privacy cop enforcing these essential consumer protections. But last year, the FTC’s sister agency—the Federal Communications Commission—reclassified broadband ISPs as common carriers outside the FTC’s jurisdiction. Unless the courts reverse that decision, there are now two privacy cops on the Internet beat.”

Articles from the Ohio Web Library: