As digital data expands, anonymity may become a mathematical impossibility. (Relationship between #BigData &privacy becoming increasingly complex - is privacy possible in this new world?
Genevieve Walsh's insight:
The greater the amount of personal data that you make available on the web, the more informative it becomes to marketers and data miners like, Acxiom.
Acxiom, who just signed a collaborative deal with Facebook, collects data on what was previously thought of as "personal information"—our name, address, and credit card records to build “summarized indicators of lifestyle, interests and activities.” Today, brokers like Acxiom, are considered somewhat old-fashioned compared with Internet companies like Facebook.
The scary thing is that Acxiom holds an average of 1,500 pieces of information on more than 500 million consumers around the world. Imagine what they will be able to do with the real time data that Facebook collects.
We are coming to the point that if the commercial incentives to mine the data are in place, anonymity of any kind may be “algorithmically impossible,” says Princeton University computer scientist Arvind Narayanan.
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