Big Data/Analytics Zone is brought to you in partnership with:

Reimagining the way work is done through big data, analytics, and event processing, Chris is the cofounder of Successful Workplace. He believes there’s no end to what we can change and improve. Chris is a marketing executive and flew for the US Navy before finding a home in technology 17 years ago. An avid outdoorsman, Chris is also passionate about technology and innovation and speaks frequently about creating great business outcomes at industry events. As well as being a contributor for The TIBCO Blog, Chris contributes to the Harvard Business Review, Venture Beat, Forbes, and the PEX Network. Christopher is a DZone MVB and is not an employee of DZone and has posted 305 posts at DZone. You can read more from them at their website. View Full User Profile

Yahoo is the Latest to Show Us There's No Place to Hide

  • submit to reddit

Is there nowhere left to hide, even for the rich?

Andorra announced that they’ll begin phasing in taxes to comply with European regulators looking to prevent tax cheats from hiding their money in this tiny mountain-locked country in the Pyrenees between France and Spain. Secrecy is a common reason to open bank accounts in places like Andorra, San Marino, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

No more. All of these countries are facing pressure and have agreed to begin sharing information about bank accounts and money movements.

Gone, it seems are the days of privacy alongside privilege, victim of the digital revolution that allows far greater transparency. It’s a good thing for us common people, no?

Yahoo reads your email

But it isn’t just the rich that are losing their hiding places. Yahoo just changed their email platform to one that reads your emails and can target offers and help reduce spam. They put it this way:

When you upgrade, you will be accepting our Communications Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. This includes the acceptance of automated content scanning and analyzing of your communications content.

Yahoo isn’t any worse than the Facebook or Google, where most people appreciate the ‘free’ services without considering that free comes at some price. Google’s attempt to mollify their users looks like this:

If you’ve recently received a lot of messages about photography or cameras, a deal from a local camera store might be interesting . . . Ad targeting in Gmail is fully automated, and no humans read your email or Google Account information in order to show you advertisements or related information.

Is it comforting that no human reads my emails and does that make it OK? I’m not sure.

A transparent life

There are two ways to look at this, depending on my trust of ‘the system’ be it government or corporations. I can live a life that’s transparent, knowing that nearly everything leaves a digital footprint. Except that for those who have things to hide and are compelled to continue what they do, this isn’t a very good option.

The other way of seeing this is a loss of personal privacy that could make us all afraid to speak up or be different from the crowd. History would be very different if lives were transparent throughout history. Imagine Galileo sharing his ‘heresy’ on Facebook in those times.

“We are not center of Universe | #GetOverYourself” would have been a damning tweet.

Be ready to pay

Taking your privacy back likely means paying for things that you could easily get for free. It also likely means giving up social channels where most of the public is found, sharing like crazy.

If privacy means cost and relative isolation…who amongst us wants that?

ShhhEDITOR’S NOTE: Wouldn’t you know, transparency discomfort creates an anti-transparency market. Paladin Deception Services – for a mere USD $54/month, they’ll pose as a friend or employer, intercept your calls or emails, and lie to your wife.

From their website:

Paladin Deception Services is here to assist you in obtaining the fictitious reference, the little white lie, or the alibi that you need. Our agency can provide you with either male or female testimonials​ over the phone in the local area code that you require.  We’re confidential, professional, innovative, and affordable.  Most importantly, we keep it legal.  Get the verification that you need!

Published at DZone with permission of Christopher Taylor, author and DZone MVB. (source)

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)