The Pew Research Internet Project published a new report this week, looking at privacy online. They surveyed a group of experts, thought leaders, innovators, and me for our thoughts. Overall it’s a sobering document, finding privacy on the wane, driven by governments, businesses, and user behavior.
Here’s their lead question:
Will policy makers and technology innovators create a secure, popularly accepted, and trusted privacy-rights infrastructure by 2025 that allows for business innovation and monetization while also offering individuals choices for protecting their personal information in easy-to-use formats?
And here’s my response:
“Too many state and business interests prevent this. Governments, from local to national, want to improve their dataveillance for all kinds of purposes: war fighting, crime detection, taxes, and basic intelligence about economics and the environment. Companies badly want data about customers, and some base their business models on that. I do not see this changing much.”
Could anything challenge this situation? Me:
“Citizen action is probably the best option, much as it was for crypto in the 1990s. But, I do not see that winning over governments and big business… In the United States, both political parties and the clear majority of citizens cheerfully cede privacy.”
Some folks expressed hopes for Millenials. I hope they’re right, but think they have an enormously uphill battle ahead, if they actually choose to fight it.
Such as: Continue reading