What Do We Know and What Should We Do About Internet Privacy? Is part of a new book series offering short, up-to-date overviews of key issues often misrepresented or simplified in the mainstream media. In this book, Paul Bernal addresses the issue of privacy on the internet and how it is challenged in a wide variety of ways – from large social media companies, whose entire business models are based on privacy invasion, through the developing technologies of facial recognition and the internet of things, to the desire of governments to monitor our every activity online. The book begins with an analysis of how the internet became what it is today, before moving onto an exploration of where we are now, looking at how the current manifestation of the internet works for people, for companies and for governments. This is followed by coverage of the new privacy battlefields of location data, health data, facial recognition and other biometrics, the internet of things and the increasingly contentious issue of political data and political manipulation. The author then proposes “What We Should Do” about the problems surrounding internet privacy, these include significant changes in government policies – reversing the current ‘war’ on encryption, challenging the idea that ‘real names’ would improve the discourse on social networks, and being brave enough to take on the internet giants. Series Editor: Professor Chris Grey, Royal Holloway, University of London
what should we do?
what should we do?
Sometimes it seems as though there is very little we can really do. Privacy is dead, we are told, and we might as well accept that. When privacy on the internet is looked at in any depth it is easy to find yourself agreeing with that rather depressing analysis – but it would be a mistake to do so for a number of reasons. The first is that the consequences of accepting the death of privacy are so significant. If we give up on internet privacy, we might as well give up on all privacy as the internet pervades almost every aspect of our lives and it is far from clear that we are ready for that. ...