Posts tagged ‘predictive modeling’
Privacy, Anonymity, and Judicial Oversight are on the Endangered List
An age old debate has once again reared its very ugly head due to whistleblower Edward Snowden’s revelations about NSA surveillance, PRISM, and the astounding lack of any rigorous oversight on the NSA’s vast data collection apparatus. While PatternBuilders has been incredibly busy, in our non-copious amounts of spare time Terence and I have also been working on our update to Privacy and Big Data (which is undergoing another rewrite due to new government surveillance revelations that for a while happened hourly, then daily, then weekly but certainly are far from over). It’s important to note that pre-revelations our task was already herculean due to mainstream media’s pick up on “all stories related to privacy” (a good thing) that often missed the mark on the technical side of the house (we often find ourselves explaining to non-techies just what meta data is which usually happens after someone on CNN, Fox, NBC, ABC, etc., butchers the definition) or got tripped up by the various Acts, Amendments, state laws, EU Directives, etc., that apply to aspects of privacy.
Over the last few weeks as details about PRISM emerged, it’s become clear to me that main street America may still not understand the seismic shift that big data and analytics brings to the privacy debate. Certainly the power of big data and analytics has been lauded or vilified in the press—followers of our twitter feed are used to seeing the pros and cons of big data projects debated pretty much every day. We’ve (Terence and I) talked and tweeted about privacy issues as it applies to individuals, companies, and governments. Heck, we even wrote a book about privacy and big data. (more…)
Let me tell you a story about my credit card company, Capital One. One evening, I was sitting in my living room watching 60 Minutes and I get a phone call. Before I pick up, I hear the following: “This is John from the Capital One fraud department and we believe that someone has stolen your credit card information.”
Naturally, I pick up the phone. Poor John. He wanted to verify that I was who I said I was and before I was willing to do that, I wanted to verify that he was who he said he was (as you may have guessed from my previous posts on privacy, I don’t like to give out personal information). Once we got over that hurdle, we had the following conversation: (more…)