Everybody’s talking about the recent Facebook scandal. For those who have no idea what we are talking about, let’s put the matter in a nutshell. In April, the internet was captivated with loud announcements, such as “Facebook steals your personal data”. 87 million users were at risk. Facebook was in a tight connection with Cambridge Analytics, who invented a special application to gather all the data of social media users. This situation was publicly announced, but don’t be fooled into believing that this isn’t happening elsewhere.
The interesting thing is that most people are still using Facebook, as it’s convenient. There was no boycott or strike, only some hype on the internet. Nobody wants to sacrifice their comfort. Other companies (Google, Apple, Microsoft, etc.) collect your data as well, and no one usually cares. Except when it goes one step too far. Most of you remember the Xbox scandal when you were seen and heard without realizing it, due to the built-in microphone and camera. It was a great intrusion on privacy, when all of your life was in the limelight.
You have no choice, even when using a smartphone. All the main companies have direct access to your data and you can’t possibly do anything with that. With the invention of artificial intelligence, things became even worse. Wherever you are, you can be found. It is really scary to realize that.
All free services and websites, including Facebook and Google, have to earn money somehow. That’s why they are monetizing their users. You pay them with your identity. While you are using Google Maps or watching videos on Youtube, they are tracking all the activity to sell the information to advertisers. That's the main reason why you see the advertisements you might be interested in. They know more information about you than almost all your friends. You can’t hide anything from them, it’s practically impossible.
There were many cases where websites, especially big online shops, were selling the databases with their clients’ numbers and names to the call-centers. Usually they dealt with the Forex sphere. If you leave your number somewhere, you shouldn’t be surprised why the stranger is calling you, and offering some kind of additional income. Make sure you leave your private information only on trustworthy portals.
We hope such scandals as this recent one won’t happen again and that users will feel safer on the web. One day things may change drastically.