NEGATIVE CONSUMER/INTERNET SOLVENCY 407
TECHNOLOGY PREVENTS PRIVACY PROTECTION
THERE CAN BE NO TECHNOLOGICAL GUARANTEES AS LONG AS PEOPLE ARE CURIOUS
CHARLES J. SYKES, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, November 14, 1999, SECTION: Crossroads Pg. 1 TITLE: PRIVATE MATTERS Who has access to your medical files? // acs-EE2001
But even if we assume they can create security systems even more powerful than the Pentagon (which have already been raided by hackers), the one problem they can't solve is people.
As long as human beings are curious, as long as they gossip, as long as the traffic in sensitive information is profitable, the technological guarantees ring hollow.
EFFORTS TO HOLD BACK ELECTRONIC INTRUSIONS INTO PRIVACY WILL FAIL
THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC, May 16, 1999 SECTION: ARTS & IDEAS; Pg. E1 TITLE: GOODBYE, PRIVACY; IT'S DOOMED IN A WORLD AFTER FASTER, CHEAPER, SAFER STUFF // acs-EE2001
Yet here is a bold prediction: All these efforts to hold back the rising tide of electronic intrusion into privacy will fail.
They may offer a brief respite for those determined, whatever the trouble or cost, to protect themselves. But 20 years hence most people will find that the privacy they take for granted today will be just as elusive as the privacy of the 1970s now seems.
THE INTERNET MEANS YOU ARE CONSTANTLY BEING WATCHED BY ITS VERY NATURE
The Plain Dealer, October 25, 1999 SECTION: PERSONAL TECH; Pg. 6E TITLE: PRIVACY IN PERIL; THE SAME WEB THAT GIVES YOU ACCESS TO THE WORLD GIVES THE WORLD ACCESS TO YOU // acs-EE2001
Logging onto the Internet these days is like strolling through the largest shopping mall on the planet.
You shop. You learn. You are entertained. You do business.
And you are watched.
Although the Internet may seem like a private experience akin to watching TV or making a personal phone call, it is not. Eavesdroppers are everywhere.
Web sites pelt your computer with "cookie" files that store information about you - information they can retrieve from your hard drive the next time you visit. If you have ever bought something online or registered for free e-mail, an online contest or daily news updates, you probably have given total strangers your name, address and phone number, and possibly your age and other personal data.
TECHNIQUES FOR USING AND ACQUIRING PERSONAL DATA ARE MUTATING DAILY
WILLIAM SAFIRE, The New York Times, May 1, 2000, SECTION: Section A; Page 23; TITLE: Essay; Consenting Adults // acs-EE2001
James B. Rule, The Plain Dealer, May 1, 2000 SECTION: FORUM OPINION & IDEAS; Pg. 9B TITLE: WE MUST PROTECT OUR DATA // acs-EE2001
These are unsettling times for us privacy advocates. Every day seems to bring new reports of surreptitious cyber-sleuths collecting Americans' personal information - typically for purposes never authorized or intended by those whose lives have been invaded.
A recent case in point is the effort to combine personal data unobtrusively collected on consumers' Web site visits with marketing data that will identify these same users by name, address, income level and lifestyle.
Techniques for seizing personal data are mutating constantly. Prescriptions and phone records are fair game for information scavengers. Their ultimate aim is highly predictable: to capture our attention and our consumer dollars for the benefit of those willing to pay most dearly.
BECAUSE OF THE FAST PACE OF INTERNET CHANGE ENFORCEMENT IS DIFFICULT AND REGULATIONS WOULD BE QUICKLY IRRELEVANT
The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, July 6, 1999, SECTION: Editorial; Pg. 6A TITLE: Editorial; Technology threatens privacy; Individuals deserve personal copyright for intimate details that companies collect. // acs-EE2001
In addition, opponents of privacy legislation argue that enforcement would be difficult, and that the quick-change nature of the high-tech business, the Internet in particular, would make regulations outdated before they can even be implemented.
SOFTWARE WILL CONTROL INTERNET CIVIL LIBERTIES
Aaron Zitner, Globe Staff, The Boston Globe, March 19, 2000, SECTION: BUSINESS; Pg. E1 TITLE: MONEY MATTERS; THE NET AT WHAT PRICE? HARVARD LAW PROFESSOR WARNS PRIVACY, FREE SPEECH BEING SACRIFICED FOR PROFIT // acs-VT2001
But Lessig notes that the Internet is made up of software, and software writers make deliberate choices about whether to build anonymity, privacy, open access, and free speech into the online experience. As the Net evolves to suit the demands of commerce, he argues, software writers and government will make going online a more stifling journey.
"It frustrated me that people thought [civil liberties] would just take care of themselves," Lessig said. "What motivated me to write the book was to get people to understand that there was something to defend here."