The Future of Internet Privacy: Regaining Control of Your Data, And Just How It Is Used
The internet model is not what we used to know. The modern age of the internet is one where you have to exchange something for something. You don’t get to use basic apps and websites without first consenting to giving something away – your data, most times.
We have reached a stage where we don’t even give it too much thought – just agreeing to what we have been asked to.
Unknowingly, you are giving these companies a free pass into your private life. You are allowing them collect data that should otherwise be kept private. At the rate at which things are moving, this is not going away anytime soon.
Internet of things: The fork in the road
Internet of things is a relatively new concept but it has started to catch on like wildfire.
Imagine the endless possibilities from having a system of otherwise ordinary things being connected by Wi-Fi to work together. Imagine how cool it would be to control the temperature in the refrigerator, adjust the intensity of the stove and turn on/ off the sprinkler system in the yard – all from your phone. Just imagine.
For this to work, you would have to give the applications that these things run on a lot of access into your private data.
How else is your shopping app supposed to know the best suggestions for you if it is not able to access your browser history? With all of this in place, it is very obvious how easy life will be made. What might not be so obvious are the various issues you might be inviting into your own life.
The dark place called prejudice
Imagine what someone who has access to all the data you thought was private could now do with it. Online stores could mine your spending preferences and use that to present you high ticket items when you could be better off with alternatives carrying lower values. That is not as painful as being subject to price discrimination just because you are perceived to be more affluent than others.
That might not be as panful as interviewing for a job that you have been rejected for ever before sitting in front of the HR panel. Afterall, they had been able to see some of your browsing activity and don’t happen to be a fan of it.
Predicting the future
Big data is ow a thing, and companies are finding incredible uses for it every single day. With big data, many corporations cook up customer behavioral patterns which they use to sell new products.
This has worked effectively, and would soon start making sure the market only gets a streamlined product line. All that diversity that used to be the order of the day will be throw into the bin. Win for them, a loss for the populace.
But the win is all that matters here. That is why this aggressive data collection won’t stop. In fact, the future is shaping up to be a data-hungry one. With the world already generating 2.5 exabytes of data every day, there is no slowing down.
Taking back your internet privacy
Almost everywhere you turn, there is someone waiting to harvest your data. You can limit what they have access to by controlling the kind of access you give to apps on your devices.
A music app, for example, has nothing to do with your contacts and messages – so don’t grant it that access. Then again, how are you sure the app complies with the request of not accessing those parts of your life?
For that reason, it is recommended that you secure all of your devices with a VPN router. From your smartphones and computers to the apps that control your smart devices, a VPN will keep you safe. That way, you would be the only one seeing the data you send over the network.
Should companies collect data from the apps, they won’t be able to identify that data as coming from you. With the VPN masking your identity, you get to enjoy all the benefits of the internet, and beyond, without another privacy-related scare to worry about.