Marketing Execs And Privacy Execs Disagree Over What Companies Do With Private Info

from the data-leaks dept

We’ve already established that privacy policies are pretty much useless, no matter how much some organizations want to pretend they matter. First off, no one reads them — and if you asked most people, they simply assume that if a site has any privacy policy then it automatically means they won’t give away any personal details to others — even if the privacy policy says exactly the opposite. In other words, someone could put up a privacy policy that says that it will reveal all your personal data to organized criminals, and most people would think that the site was safe. It’s “privacy theater” designed to make people feel good, but that has nothing to do with real privacy.

And, of course, it’s not just the people reading the policies that don’t seem to understand them — it’s those in charge of living up to and enforcing the policies. A new study surveyed a bunch of executives, including both marketing execs and those in charge of enforcing the privacy policy, and quickly discovered that marketers have a very different concept of “privacy” than privacy officers. Not surprisingly, they don’t see anything wrong with sharing all sorts of data that seems to horrify privacy officers. So, no matter who controls the policy (or where it’s posted on a site), the real issue may be who actually has access to the data and what they’re able to do with it.

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Comments on “Marketing Execs And Privacy Execs Disagree Over What Companies Do With Private Info”

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12 Comments
Steve R. (profile) says:

Double Standard

When it comes to business “data” and citizen “data” we have seem to have two standards. Business believe that they can expropriate private data at will. We already have had example where the medical profession has taken samples from patients (without their permission in some cases) and developed tests, patented those tests, and made money; and given the patient zippo.

Now if you, as a citizen, take business “data” such as a song you are deemed to be guilty of theft! Not only that, but as Mike has pointed out in other articles, the MPAA and the RIAA want to ignore due process. If they say you are guilty, you are guilty irrespective of the existence of any evidence.

Business’ should NOT have a right to expropriate, at will, what is not theirs.

passingthough says:

I’ve had the same email address for years. Only spam I seem to get is from my provider.

If you won’t protect your data, no one will do it for you. Many will see it as a golden opportunity to drop a bit of extra change into their pockets at the expense of your time.

I no longer trust privacy policies and haven’t for years, finding out what this article has just exposed long ago. The more insistent some place is about a correct email address is, the more suspicious I am of them. There are some that will go as far as to compare zip codes to states. No problem, I will search for a random city and pull up a zip just to satisfy them.

They will never under any circumstances get my real email. Privacy is up to you to enforce if you want it.

Brazel says:

No matter what the marketers and PR people may say, and no matter how many people don’t read the privacy policy, if the company writes a statement in a privacy policy and then ignores it, they can run afoul of the FTC. While the company may not be enforcing a privacy policy, there are notable cases where the FTC has enforced its authority to police privacy policies, and they have not turned out well for the companies involved.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

While the company may not be enforcing a privacy policy, there are notable cases where the FTC has enforced its authority to police privacy policies, and they have not turned out well for the companies involved.

But you fail to mention that there are many, many, many more where the FTC has done nothing and they have turned out very well for the companies involved.

All Seeing Eye says:

We are owned by the corporations. Our laws are those that they pay to have in place. Our politicians and representatives are their puppets. The only way to do anything about it is to change the way we allow them to do business. It would require a massive economic and social revolution, and I don’t think we have it in us as a nation.

This is the way the world ends, not with a bang but with a whimper.

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