Posts tagged ‘Smartphone’
In July of 2011, Terence and I were doing our day jobs (which in startup-land is way more than 8 hours) and working on “Privacy and Big Data” during the evenings and weekends. It was, by all accounts (at least according to our friends and family), a lovely summer and we missed most of it! We spent “our” July, August, and September combing through research, studies, media reports, blogs (we stopped counting the number of pages when we got to 4,000) to put together a book that was our humble attempt to cover the full spectrum of the privacy landscape:
- Our rights and expectations of privacy historically and in the digital age.
- The current “state” of privacy regulations here (U.S.) and abroad.
- The players (governments, industries, movements, and companies) that have a stake in the privacy debate and their often contentious and competing agendas.
Yes, it’s that time again: a deep drill-down into a specific big data area, courtesy of McKinsey’s voluminous report on “Big data: The next frontier for innovation, competition, and productivity.” You may be wondering about the five month delay since my last foray into this particular study but, well, we have been just a bit busy with our book (Privacy and Big Data) while working on some very cool features for our Analytics Platform as well as handling all our other PatternBuilders responsibilities!
I also must confess to a bit of angst regarding location data, especially when it pertains to where we are located as opposed to where things (like shipping boxes) are located. From a privacy standpoint, this is a rather large (okay, huge) area of concern but it’s not the data itself that we should be worried about. As in most things surrounding the privacy debate, it is how the myriad of companies, organizations, and government agencies collect and use our personal location information without our knowledge or consent that we should be worried about. (more…)
Why I Dislike GPS Tracking (and My SmartPhone): Wired’s Article on Telecoms’ Retention of Personal Data
Before I begin, I must admit my own personal bias: I have a love/hate relationship with personal devices and technology. Yes, I love that all the devices I now use have made my life so much easier in more ways than I can count (and keep track of). At the same time, I really do hate how much more information is captured about me and how there are so few regulations regarding the use of it. Now, if you read our (Terence and I co-authored) book on Privacy and Big Data or listened to our recent O’Reilly webcast you might not be surprised by this but, just in case, I needed to come clean before I dived into Wired’s article on how much data our major mobile providers are keeping about all of us. Put simply, it’s a lot.
The ACLU of North Carolina managed, under a Freedom of Information Act claim, to obtain a Department of Justice document entitled “Retention Periods of Major Cellular Service Providers.” This document (one page) was designed to help law enforcement agencies understand what information they could get from the major cellular service providers—Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T/Cingular, Sprint, Nextel, Virgin Mobile—as well as how long that data was retained:
“Verizon, for example, keeps a list of everyone you’ve exchanged text messages with for the past year, according to the document. But T-Mobile stores the same data up to five years. It’s 18 months for Sprint, and seven years for AT&T… That makes Verizon appear to have the most privacy-friendly policy. Except that Verizon is alone in retaining the actual contents of text messages. It allegedly stores the messages for five days, while T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint don’t store them at all.”
The PatternBuilders team has been “crazy busy” the last couple of weeks! Terence and I continue to work on our Ebook (plugged again!), I am still working my way through the McKinsey study on big data (long but incredibly interesting), the team is putting the final touches on a very cool analytics demo (that’s all I am going to say right now but you’ll hear more about it over the next couple of weeks), and we are all testing the latest release of our platform. That being said, when the IDC paper on “Extracting Value from Chaos” came out, I set everything aside to read through it (and you should too).
Before I begin my deep dive into the paper, I must say something about IDC: when it comes to research, nobody does it better. As a marketer, I am often asked about the different analyst firms and where a company should “spend” its analyst budget. IDC is always on my “short list” because I find its research to be both broad and deep and filled with useful insights. (Full disclosure: we are not an IDC client but hope to be one in the future.) (more…)