Advertisement

On December 23, 2010, a California resident filed a class action lawsuit against multiple Apple Apps, including Dictionary.com, Pandora, and the Weather Channel App.  Some of these iPhone Apps are in violation of Apple's own privacy policy and thus user-specific information (such as age, gender, location, and even income, ethnicity, and political views) could be accessed by these Apps.  My Google Android will most likely be next in the interrogation room.

But it's not just Apps that are reading up on us.  The increasingly popular E-Books are starting to make some people nervous because of the fact that they have antennas.  Amazon's Kindle, for example, can track what books you read and even what page you stopped reading a book.  E-Book readers protest that the act of reading is no longer private.

Isn't technology tracking us to make the products better?  Amazon's Kindle is able to suggest books by analyzing books that we have already read.  Information concerning where the book loses its audience could potentially help the author write better books.  And I ask:  what harm has happened?

Austin, Texas – where I live – seems to be a mecca of conspiracy theories; many conversations I have here (especially during breakfast at one of my favorite spots for breakfast tacos) revolve around conspiracy theories.  I also can't forget the history of a famous Austinite, Alex Jones, and the domino affect he created with his conspiracy theories.  And though I find some theories a little extreme, it does remind me that I can't be naïve about these privacy issues.  Someone can access my information if they really want to and if they choose, use it for malicious reasons.

The Federal Trade Commission is recommending that a 'no tracking' option be available (similar to 'do not call') and Internet Explorer 9 already has this available for their clients.  Privacy options should be available to us and that is now in the works.  But if a privacy option doesn't put you at ease, stick with simple phones and paperback novels—at least while they're still available.

Curt Finch is the CEO of Journyx, who provides timesheet and project resource management software.

Last updated: Jan 12, 2011




Register on Inc.com today to get full access to:
All articles  |  Magazine archives | Livestream events | Comments
EMAIL
PASSWORD
EMAIL
FIRST NAME
LAST NAME
EMAIL
PASSWORD

Or sign up using: