We are currently living in a very complex civilization that uses technology as one of the core driving tools, and the advancement will certainly not go any slower. Today maybe we only used our gadgets for our daily personal life, but what future ahead is so much more than just gadgets. There are IoT, blockchain, etc that will eventually be regular things just like our phones.
A year ago, the world was shocked by one of the biggest privacy scandals the world has ever seen. 50 million Facebook users’ private data has been compromised and lucratively used by Cambridge Analytica, the political data firm that was hired by President Trump for his election earlier in 2016. Apparently, massive data breaches and scandals happen almost every year in the past half-decade. Below is the “Number of compromised data records in selected data breaches as of November 2018 (in millions)” according to statista.com:
Because of the vulnerability of these breaches, privacy is now getting scarce and rarer. And if institutions and we don’t really act upon it, in the future, these data breach and scandals will get more and more intimidating.
Reversely, this circumstance also brings business opportunities. Currently, there are numerous companies that use a sense of privacy as their business offering. Products like brave browser, DuckDuckGo, ProtonMail, and NordVPN. Here are the snippets of the websites:
The good thing is that 3 of the products are completely free to use. Although these services have some convenience trade-off compared to the regular services (Google Search Engine, Gmail, and the speed of regular internet service). But regarding the risk of regular less secure service, I think a little bit of inconvenience is worth it. But some of it offers a paid service if we are willing to spend the cash.
The point I’m trying to make is, it seems that privacy is now and will be viewed as a luxury that needs to be bought for and just as a business model or a business offering. Rather than as our human right, and as one of the philosophical pillar of many companies.
To further down the saddening irony, people actually demanding Facebook to launch a paid facebook service that guaranteed their right to privacy. So that people could enjoy facebook without being followed by ads and cookies that will not track and fingerprint them.
So what happens next? Are the future is private? Do we really want privacy or only the illusion of it? Those are the question that frankly I can’t answer, if you are reading this article, you may think that this post is rather a disappointing one. Where usually I end my articles with a clear statement and point, I’ll end this article with a question that hopefully, you can answer.
Best VPN Service Provider | #1 Editors’ Choice. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://nordvpn.com/
Biggest online data breaches worldwide 2018 | Statistic. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.statista.com/statistics/290525/cyber-crime-biggest-online-data-breaches-worldwide/
Commentary: Why Paying for Facebook Might Be a Good Thing. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://fortune.com/2018/12/18/facebook-big-tech-data-privacy/
Granville, K. (2018, March 19). Facebook and Cambridge Analytica: What You Need to Know as Fallout Widens. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/technology/facebook-cambridge-analytica-explained.html
Privacy, simplified. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://duckduckgo.com/
Secure email: ProtonMail is free encrypted email. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://protonmail.com/
Secure, Fast & Private Web Browser with Adblocker. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://brave.com/