Internet of Things: Privacy Concerns


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Your refrigerator may order vegetables, drinks and other stuffs for you from the market if getting emptied. Or your coffee mug may greet you with a cup of hot coffee every morning. And furthermore, you would not know your toaster gossiping with your toothbrush, in a certain way about what they gossip, but would be sharing some information about us. Every physical objects we use will have some sort of line of connection among themselves and with their manufacturers.

Yes! Its not a fictitious Hollywood movie depicting some Hi-Fi technologies. Its a reality called Internet of Things (IoT), a fancy scenario in which objects, animals, people or commonly used appliances and electronics devices will have unique identifiers through embedded sensors provided with the ability to be connected to each other via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or mobile phone technology for the transfer of data over a network without requiring any sort of human interaction. These devices pose a miniaturized computer in them to analyze the data they collect, process and upload via the internet to a defined central storage facility. Presently, our TVs are getting smarter with the ability to stream data, make Skype calls and respond to our gestures. Furthermore, these devices definitely contain, in them, more sophisticated computers embedded, for more complex computation and a lot more purposes to facilitate us.

Internet of Things Info-Graphic

The tech giants Apple, Google, Microsoft and some more have been readily longing to acquire information all they can/want about us so as to make/design products and services that serve us best while also trading our personal data to others. Technology companies will use Internet of Things in a way to improve our security, health, lifestyle and habits. Later the products/services from these companies will be able to order groceries for our kitchen, inform to take our medicines, make you rethink for an extra bar of chocolate all by their intelligence. Even further, refrigerators would recommend you new flavors of ice-cream according to your taste, washing machine may recommend a brand of clothing to buy analyzing the previous dresses or a weighing machine would suggest a new diet plan for you.

Everything! Did I miss anything? NO. Yes everything we posses including car, gadgets, medicines, household appliances and tools will be connected among themselves and be very smart to analyze about you. It may seem a fancy that rather than throwing away the old models/designs, we may be able to just download the new version of features only. So we would be waiting for a new update release rather a new product. The Tesla electric cars are working in this similar way. They provide software upgrades and are enabling the cars to drive themselves. Uber is aggressively using smart-phones technology in the taxi service industry.

Internet of Things Chart

But all these sensors embedded everywhere monitoring you continuously, home and abroad may crate some sort of privacy challenges. Personal privacy and confidentiality may become dearth, continually sharing your personal information over a network. Sensored cameras will be recording our every steps and moves in the city, building, house and shopping malls while cars will know know every places we have been to. So, no privacy in home, may become a reality too.

Already, debates have arouse about whether Facebook and Instagram should be legally able to use our “Likes” and pictures that we upload for their marketing purposes. Furthermore, Google keeps track of all our emails and what we watch on You-Tube and also trace our activities in the internet to provide relevant adverts.
So it may now feel scary about imagining our future. But that’s the future we have been rapidly heading towards. So, maintaining privacy and confidentiality in the future is a major concern to all.


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