In the modern world, People mostly talk about privacy on the Internet, where they let their information flow to the third party. Internet used to be a valuable part of everyone’s life till it started to unearth how right of every third individual, who use the Internet and gadgets for making their life easy, get compromised.
You let everyone know who you are, what you do, and where you are going. You permit everyone who has authority and hacker know all about you, and when they try to steal something, then you blame them for using your details.
The government knows everything about you from who you are to what you do in daily life. That’s not only about Government who track you but also about cyber-criminals who are always there watching you from your gadget camera which you do not even know that you permit while installing an application in your laptop and mobile phone.
The internet conflicts with one’s right to privacy for these three reasons: the internet is not inherently free, mobile phones always track the user’s location and search preferences, and your devices have the capability to watch and listen to its user.
Firstly, the internet is not what is appears to be as it is not free. No doubt that the Internet has changed the way you used to live and work. The Internet made it very easy for you to connect with people around the world and work from wherever you want. But, you are paying a huge amount for getting that convenience. Everything that you get without any cost is not free, it always has hidden charges behind that and now it’s your privacy.
As you know that Internet becomes part of our life and most of us often use search engine to find out the information which we need. The search engine is so essential that we rely on this for everything from finding restaurants to friends.
We have many search engines on the Internet, especially the most popular Google. Almost everyone knows about Google, Bing and Yahoo, but you may not know why search engine offers you information for free.
In the modern world, everything has cost let alone search engine. It’s a search engine for you, but for the company it is business, and they make money by offering you free services. As it’s not free, what they do is gather your information and make data of your habit, behavior and thinking pattern which they sell to the third party for letting them advertise their product to you at the right time so that you buy whatever they sell.
In the Information Google Collects section of the Google Privacy and Terms online document (2019), it states that, “We collect information to provide better services to all our users — from figuring out basic stuff like which language you speak, to more complex things like which ads you’ll find most useful, the people who matter most to you online” (2019, para. 1).
Secondly, with the help of the internet, you can always be tracked with GPS on your mobile phones. Mobile phones are made to make calls to the person who you want to talk to.
Nowadays mobile phones are equipped with a lot of additional features that make it more like a computer in which they can do everything from searching for something on the search engine to playing games. Earlier it used just for making calls, but now it’s being used for doing office work as well. You can manage everything like texting, searching and playing music all at once without getting interrupted.
Now that mobile became smarter than it was. It is no more used just for making calls. It is used for everything, like computers and music devices. With that, you have GPS enabled on your phone from the first day you brought it. GPS, known as Global Positioning System, was meant for tracking location so that you can go to and find the right place.
There are many applications developed for making it easier for you to find the area where you want to go to. Even you may know the most popular app that is Google Map that help you track your location (Azma, 2017).
But, it’s not what you should be worried about right now. You can not only track your location using an app, but you can also be tracked by the third person using the same GPS which comes preinstalled in your device. Nobody knows how does hacking/tracking of someone’s cell phone works, but you can have an idea that it can also be done by a third person who you do not know like Government.
Lastly, devices connected to the internet can watch and listen to all that you say and do. I can share a recent real-life examples of how much we are ahead of time by describing what I did in few days and how I came to know that my device like a mobile phone which always stays with me and listens to everything whatever I say.
You will not believe it, but it’s happening without even getting into your attention. A few days back, I visited Four Dimension Computer Center with a friend for getting his laptop repaired, and after a few days, I saw their ads on Facebook. Is it Facebook who listened to that conversation? Yes, we allow apps like Facebook to access our camera, contacts, Gallery and microphone. So what might have happened during my visit to four dimensions was not a mystery.
I also have another example that is of Telus, I did not talk about it, but the day before today I visited the store for buying a mobile phone. During that conversation with the cashier, I spoke of price without naming particular company like “ Telus plan “ .
And the very next day, I saw the ads on Facebook of Telus and sports check. It is not a coincidence that I saw ads after either visiting store or talking for a while with someone. That’s how our devices listen to us 24*7, and we do not even get to know that we are sharing everything with companies.
“ You can notice how does Facebook collect information from you through a microphone and camera to learn about your preferences to let you buy things which you are most likely to buy the very next moment.” (Doffman, 2019)
The Internet has changed the way you used to work and let you connect with people around the world but it is not free at all. It takes your privacy in return for service which you love using. It always has hidden charges that is your privacy. If you have a mobile phone with you then you share everything from what you eat to where you go on the Internet without your knowledge.
It no longer is safe for those who are very concerned about their privacy before using any services because privacy is just a word but when it comes to the Internet. It’s your right to know that what you share with the world intentionally or unintentionally because in the end it’s you who become victim of cyber crime.
It is not that you hide everything and stay underground but about that you know everything is happening right in front of your eye. You are responsible for everything. Thus, it becomes more important for you to learn and make sure not even bit of information be shared with person and company which you do not know.
Note : This was originally submitted as class assignment in college by Ravinder Dande in July 2019.