Re: Security statement

Jason Williams (streak@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu)
Fri, 5 Dec 1997 09:49:54 -0600 (CST)


On Thu, 4 Dec 1997, Nick Faba wrote:
> Nothing you do is secure! Get used to it! Privacy is a thing of the
> past! if you don't like it the most you can do is well, drop out of
> sight

Point taken....but not exactly true. If people want to find out about
someone and have the money and incentive to do it, they can find out
pretty much anything they want.

The person that truly wants to spy on CU-SeeMe sessions can probably find
a way to do it. But the general privacy is still there. I don't see the
mass public walking around with their neighbor's credit history. The
people wil money and incentive can indeed find out a lot. The same was
true 20 years ago as well.

> There is nothing you can do, except if you live in the woods,

You still have to list a place of residence...that's recorded and hence
trackable :)

> don't use cash

Cash is about the most secure way in terms of doing things. If you pay in
cash, it's not easily tracked.

> don't do taxes

I (luckily) don't know anyone that works at the IRS :)

> think about it...EZPass...ATM's, Phone cards, Cellphones, for christ
> sake, Gas cards, INTERNETACCESS, web traffic, check cashing cards,
> Grocery store cards, hell, I could find out what you BOUGHT at A&P last
> Saturday! everything we do is recorded, therefore readable. Do you
> expect it to be any other way? why would it be...because of the HONOR
> SYSTEM???????

We have new innovations and decide whether or not to use them based on
lots of factors like convenience. Most people with credit cards use them
for convenience, not because they don't mind being tracked and targeted.
The same is true for cell phones, ATMs, etc. People outweigh the benefits
gained from them over the privacy loss that comes with it.

This reminds me of a show I saw once about how Television commercials can
change. They were talking about having unique commercials displayed to
every household in America based upon that family's buying habits. If you
bought a certain kind of soap more, you'd see more ads for it, etc. The
web is already doing this with tracked usage to regulate which ads you
see.

If people were that bothered and concerned about the lack of privacy that
occurs using new devices (cell phones, etc), then the devices themselves
wouldn't last very long in the market place. So obviously, the benefits
outweighs the negatives.

--
streak@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu    * Jason Williams -- Austin, Tx.  |     |
streak@mail.utexas.edu       * University of Texas at Austin  | ___ |
streak@cs.utexas.edu         * BS Computer Science             \_|_/
*************** http://ccwf.cc.utexas.edu/~streak/ **************|