drones

Drones, phones and other 2012 privacy threats

by Jaikumar Vijayan, Computer World  |  published on January 1, 2013

Verizon’s attempt — unsuccessful so far — to secure a patent for a so-called ‘snooping technology,’ which in this case would let television advertisers target individual viewers based on what they’re doing or saying in front of their sets, capped another challenging year for privacy advocates.

Verizon’s snooping technology and TV ads

The Verizon technology, which includes a sensor/camera housed in a set-top box, would determine the activities of individual viewers — eating, playing, cuddling, laughing, singing, fighting or gesturing — and then trigger personal advertisements based on the activities.

Overall, the technology would serve targeted ads based on what the user is doing, who the user is, his or her surroundings, and any other suitable personal information, according to Verizon.

The U.S. Patent Office delivered a “non-final” rejection of Verizon’s application in November.

But analysts say that because engineers are already working on such technology, it’s a cinch that some kind of similar technology will be included in TV set-top boxes in the not too distant future.

Here, in no particular order, are other developments in 2012 that could have a major long-term impact on privacy:

The U.S. drone law: Eye in the sky

The Federal Aviation Administration Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, signed into law by President Barack Obama in February, was immediately slammed by rights groups, privacy advocates and lawmakers who contended that the law poses a major threat to the privacy of law-abiding citizens.

No comments yet - you can be the first!

Comments are closed.

Do you Love your country but hate your government?

Join your fellow Libertarians who seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others. Join over 500,000 Americans who get their daily dose of minimal government and maximum freedom with The New Liberty Movement.

We know how important your privacy is and your information is SAFE with us. We’ll never sell
your email address and you can unsubscribe at any time directly from your inbox.
View our full privacy policy.