According to the Oxford dictionary, “the state of being alone and not watched or disturbed by other people means privacy”.
I’m sure that you’ve heard from your family or friends that if you didn’t commit anything bad you shouldn’t worry about people knowing about it but this thinking is completely wrong. How? Let’s talk about it.
Privacy is a fundamental human right, in many countries privacy is not explicitly protected by law especially when it comes to the internet and there we have seen an aggressive erosion of our privacy. It starts simply by ticking a box. By agreeing to those terms and conditions, have you read them? Are you sure they didn’t look too long and last time you tried they were impossible to understand?
After agreeing to those terms and conditions the power imbalance is established because we have agreed to our personal information being gathered and used on a scale we never imagined. Companies can sell your personal information. For example, financial loss: based on your web browsing history. The algorithm might decide whether you will get a mortgage or not; a fitness app can sell your data to a health insurance company, preventing you from getting coverage in the future.
All of this is happening in the world today. If we know that we are being watched and monitored we will change our behavior.The government must create a safer internet by ensuring enforcement and up to date rules. As citizens, we can use our voice to remind the world that technology can only truly benefit society if it respects basic rights.
Over 80 countries and independent territories, including nearly every country in Europe and many in Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia, and Africa, have now adopted comprehensive data protection laws. India has also drafted a bill but it’s still pending.
Personal Data Protection Bill 2019
The Personal Data Protection Bill 2019 was presented in the Indian parliament by the Minister of electronics and information technology on 11 December 2019. The status of the bill is pending.
But there are some serious issues like data localization, government processing our data, and surveillance reforms. But Forbes India reports that “there are concerns that the bill gives the government blanket powers to access citizen’s data”.
One of the most used search engine Google is facing a $5 billion lawsuit over tracking users in incognito mode. The lawsuit which was filed in the federal court in San Jose, California accuses the company of collecting information about what people view and what pages they visit online despite claiming incognito mode is private. And the same goes for Xiaomi too. According to the Forbes article, Xiaomi is sending private data to China. In the article, he mentioned even the search you made in incognito mode the details are sent to China. Before this, news about tik tok came out that it was sending personal data of users to China.
Having strong data protection laws are very important in today’s digital world. During this lockdown zoom app was downloaded and used by many people across the world but news came out it is not safe to use as it was also collecting personal data of users. Some other apps you should uninstall right now are UC browser, Dolphin browser, Share it, ES File Explorer file manager. Even after several warnings from government zoom is the most downloaded app in India. This shows how much Indians care about their data. In the digital world, privacy is a myth. But it’s up to us how we are dealing with it.
To protect our data we need strong data privacy laws. Please don’t take this issue lightly and never say it again that I’ve got nothing to hide. If we raise our voice today only then we can have strong data privacy laws. So, now if you’re worried about your privacy. So, go and delete those useless apps on your phone . And forget about you don’t have anything to hide.