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+ - What data mining firms know about you-> 1

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storagedude writes "Time writer Joel Stein spent three months learning what data mining companies know about him. After learning everything the companies had profiled about him (some of it inaccurate) — social security number, age, marital status, religion, income, debt, interests, browsing and spending habits — he had a surprising reaction: complacency.

"... oddly, the more I learned about data mining, the less concerned I was. Sure, I was surprised that all these companies are actually keeping permanent files on me. But I don't think they will do anything with them that does me any harm. There should be protections for vulnerable groups, and a government-enforced opt-out mechanism would be great for accountability. But I'm pretty sure that, like me, most people won't use that option. Of the people who actually find the Ads Preferences page — and these must be people pretty into privacy — only 1 in 8 asks to opt out of being tracked. The rest, apparently, just like to read privacy rules."

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What data mining firms know about you

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  • Way less than 1 out of 8 people had a problem with their neighborhood being sprayed by DDT too. It wasn't until all those deformed babies showed up that they changed their minds.

    Is that what we need here? A bunch of deformed babies in pop-ups warning people about the risks of massive data centralisation?

1 Billion dollars of budget deficit = 1 Gramm-Rudman