Data is a critical part of any business, and companies today are making use of data for numerous purposes. The way businesses have been collecting information from users online has been controversial lately. Data is being collected from the use of software applications on personal computers or mobile devices with user permission, even though there are other ways to collect this kind of data without having to bother the users.
As long as you get nothing but good results in your business, nobody can stop you while using personal data in one way or another. Advances in technology has put us at different crossroads when it comes to decisions that affect our lives; either we should be worried about how our privacy will continue to be respected by businesses seeking profits through the harvesting of personal data; or should we be happy about the many benefits the companies we trusted with our information continue to bring to us through their services and products.
Businesses today are collecting personal data from users online without asking for permission because this has become very easy and convenient to do. Software applications and websites that use personal data likely won’t ask you questions, or give you a chance to deny them access to your information; they will simply collect it quietly in the background, which is unacceptable if you find out what is really going on. Web applications such as search engines collect data whenever you visit their site, also when you enter private browsing mode or clear cache. Examples of mobile apps that harvest data include those which send notifications and intermittently show ads; these can be removed in device settings.
Mobile apps also collect data in the background when using their services, like location information and contact information; these are never asked by you to be collected. There are other instances where data can be collected without asking permission from users, for example when downloading music files or streaming content online. It could have been an option for software providers to ask you if they can use your personal data during this process but it’s all just part of the agreement that tells you that there will be advertisements popping up once in a while when using their services. The fact remains that businesses today know more about us than we do ourselves, yet consumers continue to trust them with our personal data because they provide services or products which cannot be replaced by anything else available.
In the end, it will be your decision to decide whether or not you should be worried about how businesses continue to collect data from users without permission. Ultimately, it will also be up to you on what you will do if you discover that some of your personal information is being used without your consent. One important factor which needs to be considered here is whether using data in a certain way can actually benefit a business and its customers at the same time. To make a long story short, an algorithmic decision-making strategy must have been thought out by businesses before they use personal data from their clients. At this point in time, most companies just ignore the inevitable future where the absence of transparency regarding our online activities would lead people into making decisions not based on facts but rather bias.
Another thing to consider is how the personal data collected from users can be used in a way that will benefit them in terms of searching for the best suggestions related to their needs and choices. The whole idea behind using algorithms when processing information is to remove human error when it comes to making decisions, which leaves you with only the best results at your disposal. For instance, if you are looking for an apartment that doesn’t cost more than $1,500 monthly rent within San Francisco; this search result can be improved through predictive analytics which will show leads which match your criteria but are not yet available online.
As long as people continue to use free services online without knowing what they are really signing up for, data will continue to be collected from them. Companies involved in data harvesting will always point out the benefits users get from their automated systems but, at the end of the day, it is still important that people are at least given a chance to decide whether or not they want to give business permission to collect their information. Knowing your online privacy rights is very important but knowing where and how your personal information can be used by others is even more essential.
Knowing more about your online privacy rights is one of the most important things you need to do if you are using free online services. The business will always use benefits as a reason for data collection but the onus is on you to decide what best works for you in terms of protecting your personal information.