Privacyof citizens around the world is not dead although is threatened bythe developments of new technologies. Despite technological advances,it should be noted that information gets in the public domain due othe recklessness of the people. As much as people want to blame thetechnology for leaking of their private information, all are awarethat it cannot happen people don`t release the said information(Stefik, 1999).It is simple in that if one thinks that particular set of informationis private, then they should not be disseminated into the publicplatforms that could lead to its spread informed by the developmentof technology.
Individualsand groups have attempted to fight back in an attempt to regain theirlost privacy that is informed by technological developments. Oneaspect about technology is that it provides very few avenues toprotect the privacy of individuals or groups. Therefore, theindividuals are compelled to adopt very drastic measures in an effortto retain or regain their privacy. One such drastic measure isclosing down of the Facebook account. Facebook is one of the platforms that enhance information sharing and accessibility. Theaccessibility ensures that private information is available anytimeanyone who is online wants to access it. The faceboook accountscontain the names of the individuals, photos of self and familiesamong other private information of the individuals and groups. Otherinformation is their place of work, date of birth and academicinformation. The availability of such private information ensuresthat through the available search engines, all the confidentialinformation could share in an instant. People can track down all theactivities of an individual based on the Facebook postings. ThereforeFacebook information of an individual is basically all the availableinformation such individuals have. Facebook takes every aspect ofprivacy of individuals. Besides one cannot control the number ofpeople who can access such information. That is because the settingson sites are basically meant to achieve that purpose. Once anindividual or groups close their face book accounts it means that thepublic is denied from accessing such information. There closing offace book accounts is one of the drastic measures that individualsare employing to fight back for their lost privacy.
Anotherdrastic measure that individuals use to fight against loss o theirprivacy is deletion of Twitter accounts. Just like Facebook, thetwitter accounts contain all the information of persons as demandedat the point of registration. The consequence of that is that all theactivities of individuals could be easily monitored by third parties.The private information could be manipulated by individuals withhidden motives to harm the individuals. On the twitter accountspeople can follow an individual and get to know all their activities(Cate, 1997).They get to know who someone is interacting or sharing informationwith. The information on Twitter could also be accessed through theuse of the available search engines. The basic information of theindividual is, therefore, accessible to all at any given time. Justlike on the Facebook the information on Twitter consist of all theprivate information of the individual and deleting the account willensure that no search engine is any longer able to access the privateinformation of the individual hence closing out the rest of the worldfrom accessing their private information. On closing down theaccount, no one from around the world is able to follow theactivities of the individual and hence initiate the process ofregaining the lost privacy. The majority of people just ignore thesheer danger they expose themselves to when the post all theirprivate information on Twitter. It is shared by people around theworld within seconds and could be used to harm at some point in thefuture. Such danger is completely eradicated when the twitter accounthas been closed.
Anotherserious measure that is used by individuals or group to regainprivacy is deleting of the Google accounts. Google is the mostintensive search engines available in the world at the moment. Theimplication of those individuals who have any types of accounts be itemail or social have basically made their private informationavailable to anyone who would like to access such information. Thecompany itself frequently uses such private information of theindividuals for advertisement. The consequence of that is thatcompanies and individual businesses have private information of theindividuals in their fingertips and such could be used whenever it isneeded McClellan, G. S. (1976)..The deletion of Google account there almost certainly close out theindividual from the rest of the online participants as it is thewebsite that holds almost information of all the people thatparticipate in online activities. It is a search engine that is usedby billions of people in the world to provide instant informationabout the individual. Closing down the accounts implies that suchaccounts together with all personal information on the web are notavailable to other online players. Deleting the Google accounts bythe individuals and groups has been considered as one of the mosteffective ways of regaining privacy lost due to the advancements intechnology.
Anothermeasure that is used by individuals and groups to regain privacy isthe deletion of windows live account. Although the settings to deletethe windows live accounts are hidden unlike those of the othersdiscussed above, it could still be done to guard an individualagainst the preying eyes of all those on the social media. Whenwindows live accounts are closed a person is not available online atany given time their images are also away from the public domain. Theimplication is that the accessibility of the individual privateinformation is not available and hence cannot be used to harm theirprivacy. Many people have succeeded in regaining their privacythrough the deletion of the windows live accounts.
Thereare so many online accounts online that individuals participate inwhere the private information of the individuals is registered.Individuals are embarking in closing all online accounts in whichtheir private information is accessible. Such accounts include datingsites, professional sites, and membership clubs among other sitesthat demand personal information as a condition for registration. Theidea is to withdraw from all online sites that have privateinformation about the individual. Such withdrawal ensures that theprivate information is not longer accessible by members of thegeneral public via the use of the search engines.
Anothermeasure that has equally been effective in regaining privacy in theface of developing technologies is the use of proxies in accessinginformation in the social media. When individuals don`t use theirpersonal accounts to access the social sites such as Facebook andTwitter, It becomes extremely hard to reveal their identity and henceto protect their privacy as desired. This is a method that has beenemployed by several individuals around the world and it is successfulin concealing of personal identities. Use of proxies is probably oneof the most successful measures to regain privacy adopted by peopleand groups around the world.
Anotheruseful measure that has been adopted by people and groups to regainthe lost privacy is by permanently setting their browsers to privatebrowsers so that the search engines cannot identify the individualand hence continue protecting the individual from the public eye.With such setting of the browser, it becomes extremely hard for thesearch engines to detector acquire any private information of theindividuals. For example, if a person is using the Firefox browser,private browsing has an option that allows an individual toautomatically open in the private browsing mode. It is thendownloaded and at the browser privacy options, one can tell thewebsites that they don`t want to be tracked.iit is very effectivelyas the location of the individual is sealed and. Therefore, theirprivacy cannot be intruded.
Anothermeasure that is equally successful in the regaining of the privacy inthe face of the advancing technologies is one where the socialnetwork accounts are secured so that they cannot be tracked by thesearch engines. Securing of the social network account implies thatthe individual can control the number of people they would like tointeract with. Their private information is therefore much protectedas no one can access it by use of the search engines. This measureensures that the individuals are quite in control of the informationto share and hence guard their private lives.
Othermeasures that been employed to regain privacy by the individuals orthe groups is the use of virtual private networks to access theinternet. VPNs, as they are popularly known, allows an individual tobrowse the internet without being noticed, they are also able toblock any online users who may want o intrude into their internetuse. They keep precise information of the individual private fromprivate companies especially the marketing that uses private internetinformation to acquire revenues.
Individualsalso make use of free online services that protect them from thetracking by third parties and other browsers. The free onlineservices ensure that the person or groups cannot be tracked by thebrowsers that they use (McClellan, 1976).This is one strategy that has been employed in the past and hasachieved reasonable levels of success.
However,most of the measures that are used by the individuals and groups toregain their lost privacy are likely to fail. The fact the world ischanging very fast means that people and groups have to adjust sothey cope with the changing times. One of the reasons that theindividual share their information online is for the achievement oftheir economic goals. Businesses and other economic activities haveundergone a transformation and are conducted online. The traditionaland the physical way of doing things have been overtaken by events.Any attempt to go back to the old ways would only make theindividuals lose their focus and cannot function properly in thecurrent contexts. Any attempts by the individuals to close themselvesfrom the rest of the world would ensure that they cannot participatein the exploitation of the available economic opportunities mainlybecause most organizations conduct their operations online. To takepart in any of the activities offered by the agencies, registrationis required which would mark the beginning of information sharing.
Itis also extremely hard to conceal one`s location as long as theindividual is engaging in online activities. Apart from the internet,the use of CCTV cameras in almost all the areas of cities around theworld pose a significant challenge to the individuals who are keen onconcealing their identities. One doesn`t have to be online for theirlocation to be identified. Cameras serve that purpose just fine.
Anothermajor challenge is that there is the emergence of technologies toundo almost all the existing technologies especially in the world ofcomputers. That implies that software has been developed by the blackmarket and is capable of disabling the functions of all otherexisting software (Carroll, 2006).The implication of that it becomes extremely hard to conceallocations and browsers making the individual information accessibleto hackers and other individuals who are keen on obtaining it. Thefact that majority of people around the world make use of the cellphone has made it easier to locate all their locations. Suchidentifications and accessibility of the mobile phone informationutilized by the individuals and groups make it hard for the privacyto be regained.
Inconclusion, technological developments have posed a real threat tothe privacy of persons and groups. Private information is flowingfreely, and it is almost impossible to conduct any of the affairs inprivate. The internet and the cell phone have made it easier to trackprivate information and conversations at will. The social mediaplatforms have significantly exposed the individuals to the eyes ofthe public. The use of the internet ensures that information could beshared within minutes. There are cameras all over the place, and itis becoming extremely hard for any forms of privacy to be achieved inthe face of the technological developments sweeping across the world.However, individual and group efforts could go a long way to guardingaccessibility of private information and hence reducing exposure thatcould be exploited to harm the individuals. The world has become aglobal village, and there is nowhere for anyone to hide. Informationconsidered private in the past is no longer private. The rate ofexchange of information is higher than ever before. It’s theresponsibility of the individuals to share information that they deemnecessary.
Carroll,J. (2006). Privacy.Detroit: Greenhaven Press.
Stefik,M. (1999). Theinternet edge: Social, legal, and technological challenges for anetworked world.Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
Cate,F. H. (1997). Privacyin the information age.Washington, D.C: Brookings Institution Press.
McClellan,G. S. (1976). TheRight to privacy.New York: H.W. Wilson Co.
McClellan,G. S. (1976). Iknow who you are and I saw what you did: Social networks and thedeath of privacy.New York: Free Press.