with enough data, it’s even possible to discover information about a person’s future

In 1995, the European Union introduced privacy legislation that defined “personal data” as any information that could identify a person, directly or indirectly. The legislators were apparently thinking of things like documents with an identification number, and they wanted them protected just as if they carried your name.

Today, that definition encompasses far more information than those European legislators could ever have imagined

First, the amount of data created each year has grown exponentially

three-quarters of data is generated by individuals as they create and move digital files.

A typical American office worker produces 1.8 million megabytes of data each year. 5,000 megabytes a day

Much of this data is invisible to people and seems impersonal. But it’s not

nearly any type of data can be used, much like a fingerprint, to identify the person who created it

the more data there is, the less any of it can be said to be private, since the richness of that data makes pinpointing people “algorithmically possible,”

The types of information we’ve thought of as personal data in the past—our name, address, or credit card records—are already bought and sold by data brokers like Acxiom, a company that holds an average of 1,500 pieces of information on more than 500 million consumers around the world

Yet these data brokers today are considered somewhat old-fashioned compared with Internet companies like Facebook, which have automated the collection of personal information so it can be done in real time

In February, Facebook announced a deal with Acxiom and other data brokers to merge their data, linking real-world activities to those on the Web

Such data sets are often portrayed as having been “anonymized” in some way, but the more data they involve, the less likely that is to be actually true.

with enough data, it’s even possible to discover information about a person’s future

a person’s approximate location up to 80 weeks into the future, at an accuracy of above 80 percent could be predicted

source:

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/514351/has-big-data-made-anonymity-impossible/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

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