Re: Re: Right, REASON to not let the Google snoop on you!
You can't opt out of the Government's surveillance.
The government is using the same forms of technology that other companies are using. You could choose not to use telephones (esp. mobile phones), etc. Look, the people putting tracking devices in your technology are the techies, not the government. Silicon Valley believes it is a very good thing to be able to keep tabs on everything you do.
As I have said multiple times, all the government needs to do is become a data-buying customer like all the other companies that are sharing and selling data to each other.
The data collection/surveillance isn't going away because that's how lots of tech companies make their money.
The very tools that Silicon Valley has invented to serve itself are the same tools that DC is using. The technology isn't being abused by government until it begins locking up the wrong people. But trying to keep government from using the same tools that private companies are using is trying to put the genie back into the bottle.
As some observers have been pointing out, many companies have been happy to provide data to government. They may not want to say so publicly, but if they are making a profit by serving government, I doubt they really want that opportunity to go away.
And as I hope to illustrate with the quotes I have posted, some of the leaders of Silicon Valley don't give a shit about privacy.
I've been saying this for years. The potential misuse of the data that is being collected is frightening. I am sure that I have broken many legitimate laws. I have no idea how many secret laws, or secret interpretations of laws that I have violated if somebody decided they wanted to persecute me.
It costs money to keep people in prison. Seems to me that most people aren't at risk of being thrown in jail. Now, of course if you're black or Latino, it's another matter.
I'm sure people know their data is being collected by both corporations and governments. The issue is how much and how transparent the process is, with which checks and balances. Corporations AND government have both got to be kept reined in from their worst excesses.
I doubt that data is not going to be collected. And I doubt that companies want limits placed on what they can collect and do with it, so therefore transparency would be good. Have everyone (public and private) tell us what they are collecting and what they are doing with it.
A Security Scholar Talks About the NSA Scandal's Private Side -: "[Private companies are] perfectly OK with sharing information, and they do so constantly. But they need some kind of alibi to do so. They need a scapegoat like 'the government made us do it' or 'we did our best to anonymize your data and someone hacked us, and it wasn’t quite as anonymous as we thought it to be.'"
Google to Feds: Please Let Us Talk About Spying [UPDATE: Facebook Too]: "You have to wonder, then, why Google has never tried to change this law, when there have been opportunities—these FISA amendments have faced reauthorization every year since their introduction in 2008. Microsoft, Verizon, AT&T, and HP have all spent money trying to influence FISA. But despite, according to federal disclosure data, spending over $44 milion on general lobbying to date and enjoying 37 employees on federal advisory committees, Google has not once lobbied regarding FISA when it's faced congressional reauthorization."
Re: Re: Re: Re: "Low Level" or "Junior" IT Professionals aren't normally paid $200k salary
Another thing that has been raised in a number of articles is why Hong Kong (China is not known for its support of personal freedoms) and why blow all of your money staying in an expensive hotel when there are much cheaper ones available.
I've half-kiddingly suggested that perhaps he's been working for China. And given the timing of his disclosures (when Obama was meeting with Xi), it might have been good leverage for China in the talks.
And imagine a company as big as Google continuing to buy up other companies and offering an ever expanding list of services so that in time all the world's communications and data pass through it. Would you pass laws to prevent this? And if you pass such laws, who would you have enforce those laws?
No one entity should be trusted with that much data. Not the NSA, the CIA, the FBI and all the other various acronyms we label our governmental subsidiaries.
Not Google, not Facebook, etc.
Look, the technology is now there to amass the data. Everyone is going after it. People are pushing the boundaries of how much info they can gather and what they can do with it.
Seems to me we're headed toward a world where organizations and companies are going to do this because they can.
And here's the tech/libertarian dilemma. If you want to allow companies to amass data, and if you want to minimize government interference and regulations, then every person, company, country, etc. is going to amass data and do whatever the hell they want with it.
Why can't the government collect data just like everyone else? What, you're going to pass laws and regulations restricting what can be done with data going on the Internet? Yeah, sure.
If any entity can gain access, eventually everyone can gain access. Let's deal with that reality instead. Essentially there are no secrets anymore.
It's easy to get to thinking the government watches everything us little peons do, but the reality of it is (and anyone who has worked for government programs will understand): They don't have the resources, time, or reason to care about 99% of our piddly daily activities, including your porn sites, your purchases, or anything else.
That's how I feel. What most people do isn't of great concern to the government.
However, private companies do zero in on what we do because there is money to be made.
Big Data and Analytics: The Hero or the Villain ? | Innovation Insights | Wired.com: "If you think about all the hype generated about consumer privacy and enterprises collating and analyzing information for a more targeted and personal experience, customer segmentation and demographics, location-based and real-time marketing what the NSA exposure has taught us is that there really is no privacy in the 21st century and we should just get used to it. Our data is anonymized unless it’s being used specifically for our purpose and benefit but the fact is we are happily generating it for them to use in any case."
Re: Re: Your records ARE being checked -- by private companies
Massive files are being collected on people -- by private companies.
We don't really know what all is being collected and how that is being used. And when some privacy groups suggest that private companies be totally transparent, the private companies haven't been especially forthcoming. And when citizens want to see those files and be able to erase that data, they are often told how impractical that is for private companies.
When the focus is only on government, it's a way for private companies to be dodgy about what they do. I'm not sure we're going to get rid of the data collection and surveillance by private companies, but we can at least all be aware of everything that is being done.
Re: Your records ARE being checked -- by private companies
When Your Data Is Currency, What Does Your Privacy Cost? : Monkey See : NPR: "Would the growing number of people who willingly share so much of what they do on Twitter and Facebook and Foursquare be horrified that the government could, in theory, look at a database of their phone calls? If you spend your time posting, 'Here's a map showing where I am, a list of people I'm with, a description of what I'm doing, a picture out my window, a list of the companies I buy from, a list of political causes I support, three articles I just read, and my review of the movie I just saw and where I saw it,' what are the odds that the existence of a database saying your phone called this other phone for 4 minutes and 19 seconds will shock your conscience?"
Your records ARE being checked -- by private companies
"Because even if you're not doing anything wrong, you're being watched and recorded. And the storage capability of these systems increases every year consistently by orders of magnitude to where it's getting to the point where you don't have to have done anything wrong, you simply have to eventually fall under suspicion from somebody, even by a wrong call. And then they can use the system to go back in time and scrutinize every decision you've ever made. Every friend you've ever discussed something with. And attack you on that basis, to derive suspicion from an innocent life, and paint anyone in the context of a wrongdoer."
This is routinely being done by private companies. They run checks on people all the time. In fact, the only way to prevent them from doing it is by passing laws saying what info they can't use to deny people services, to deny renting to them, to deny selling to them, to deny insurance to them, etc.
The vast data collection system is being used to monitor people. Get rid of government monitoring, but allow businesses to do it freely, and you will find people routinely treated differently depending on what businesses find out out them.
Think of all the discrimination that has happened over the years to gays. All someone had to do was to suggest you were gay and you'd be treated differently.
I'm getting caught up on my reading and just saw this.
Are coders worth it?: "We like to think that because we can code, we have unprecedented leverage over the world. We decide what 15 million people will see when they follow a link. Our laptops literally get hot from the electric action we command."
I perceive that attitude a lot as I read the articles about what's wrong with DC and how the tech companies know better. Yes, there's a ton wrong with DC. But I don't want one group of "we know best" to be replaced with another group of "we know best."
The Silicon Valley/Davos/TED environment is more elitist, I believe, than the participants realize. And of course, the same thinking happened among previous generations. It's not new, which is the point. It's the same thinking among whoever controls the wealth and power at any given moment.
Whoever is hot shit at the moment thinks they know best. Then eventually they get displaced by something. But before they get displaced, they try to hang on to what they have in the same ways as each power generation tries to hang on.
Nobody cares you watch lesbian granny porn and pay for the privilege.
Same here. I'm not overly concerned about being caught in a dragnet because of what I do online or offline. Not only do I not do anything worth spying upon, I'm not worth the time and effort to catch me doing something.
What DOES concern me is replacing one type of concentration of power with another one. The goals of Google, Facebook, and Amazon seem to be to run as much of the world through their servers as possible. I don't necessary view their power grabs as inherently better than NSA's power grab. So I don't buy the "Don't trust the US government, but do trust us" pitch that seems to come from some business folks.
Basically what I see are a variety of institutions, both public and private, wanting to know everything about everyone -- because the technology allows it. However, government operations can't really do much with what most of us do day-to-day, while big companies CAN do something with (either sell us something or sell our data to someone). Therefore, the minutiae of my daily life is much more likely to come to the attention of companies like Google, Facebook, and Amazon than US security operations.
As I have been saying on Techdirt for quite awhile now, I anticipate that at some point the US government will privatize all security operations and whenever there is a political flap, it will let private companies take the heat. The private companies are already collecting the data and it would be easy enough for them to flag whatever any customer (in this case the US government) wants them to flag. Want to develop profiles of gun owners who will likely become mass murderers? Done. Want to profile airline passengers? Done.
Citizens are already been flagged by credit companies, insurance companies, real estate companies, etc. The government will likely buy that data for its own uses, too.
Maybe at some point there will more transparency on the part of both government and private companies, fully disclosing what they are collecting, what they are doing with that data, and who has access to it.