Companies are monitoring and profiting off of every move that consumers make on the internet without consent. The government then works with these companies to understand to have power over the American people. To understand why companies are using consumer data, we first need to establish the data they are collecting. Companies collect four different types of data.
What Kind of Data Are Companies Collecting?
The first type of data being collected is personal data such as a social security number, an IP address, passwords, or gender. The second type of consumer data being collected is engagement data. This category shows how internet users interact with the media that they consume. The third type of data is behavioral data that demonstrates how users spend their money. Some examples can be online purchase history, mouse movement information, and repeated actions. The fourth and final type of data is attitudinal data. This type of data incorporates metrics on consumer satisfaction (How and Why Businesses Collect Your Personal Data).
What Kind of Data is Being Collected on Students?
How Do Companies Use Personal Data?
The most common use of data is to enhance the consumer’s experience by researching and analyzing their online tendencies. The reason why businesses rob our data is that they want to turn our data into profit. There are Data Brokers who buy and sell customer information and make hefty profits while doing so. The Data Brokers are also very valuable to businesses because user data is just extra cash flow for their business and understanding who uses their product
What Are The Best Ways to Secure Your Data?
It is almost inevitable that some of your personal data will be stolen from you, but there are ways to
- Create complex passwords. Adding a few extra numbers or characters to passwords will make them exponentially harder for hackers to crack the code.
- Never save passwords on a personal device because it makes it much easier for hackers to steal and sell your information.
- Use a VPN when using public wifi. Think of a VPN like an N95 mask that protects your software from catching a virus, do not be an anti masker. A VPN will mask your IP address so it would be impossible to be traced.
- Back up data to a hard drive periodically. Even if there is a data breach, this task ensures that all of your data is safe and protected on the hard drive (Ten Ways to Keep Your Data Private)
Do How Do You Encrypt Your Data?
In the comments below, please feel free to let me know:
- How do you secure your data?
- Have you ever been hacked? If so, were you able to recover your personal data?
- Do you feel comfortable using the internet after discovering how companies are intruding on your personal data?
Be sure to respond to other answers from your peers so we can all learn how to safely use the internet. I would also appreciate any feedback you have for my page, thank you!
Here is a link to my sources and all of my research papers on the past, present, and future of data privacy: