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

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storagedude
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?

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