With WhatsApp’s recent policy change regarding the use of our data, there’s been a lot of confusion everywhere; both locally and internationally making it seem like every single bit of our data, private information and most importantly our chats and conversations will be made public.
Well, I’m just here wondering why all these fuss about quitting WhatsApp for Signal, Telegram etc is really worth it. Also trying to make a little sense out of all the confusion for myself and create an avenue for my fellow readers to be able to think and reason from a different point of view.
First of all, as the title of this article says, Data Privacy is a MYTH, it really is saying the truth. Secondly, let’s try and understand what the words “Data Privacy” and “Myth” means before I proceed with my thoughts.
What is Data Privacy?
Data privacy, also called information privacy, is the aspect of information technology (IT) that deals with the ability an organization or individual has to determine what data in a computer system can be shared with third parties.
What is a Myth?
A myth is an idea or story that many people believe, but which is not true. A widely held but false belief or idea.
How is Data Privacy a MYTH?
Now that we’ve seen what these words mean, let me continue.
Data Privacy has been emphasized or let me say over emphasized by almost all institutions handling, hoarding or dealing with loads of people’s data. A lot of promises have been made but there have been a couple of instances where these promises were not fulfilled and was been breached.
In recent years, our data has been passed on from company to company, specifically, passed on here means SOLD. Yes I like to see our data as a commodity that’s traded for money, making it hard to know exactly where our data was taken from and also, who sold it and who purchased it.
WhatsApp although, still stated that an end to end encryption is still in place but what else can we be sure about?
Should we be bothered anymore?
Why should we be bothered about WhatsApp when we’re not sure about our network providers, our smartphone makers, Google (who has access to up to 90% of peoples names, phone numbers, emails, locations, passwords and so on), even some institutions in our government cannot be trusted either.
I’m sure if a quality probe is done related to how private our data is, there will be…. let’s not even think about it yet.
Nevertheless, why it’s okay to get furious over WhatsApp new privacy policies, I still do not see how moving from WhatsApp to another social network improves anything, as a matter of fact, I believe it’s only a matter of time before these other social networks begin to trade your data for some income, think of it, how does tech companies like social media platforms make money if not by using their database for a productive purpose?
And moreover, the FBI, CIA and any police department has access to your data, all they need is a warrant and boom, the social media network opens the flood gates of data.
Do not get me wrong, it’s after all my point of view which might surely differ to yours which is entirely normal but even the banks and payment gateways we use has access to loads of our data, are we thinking that way also? Are they selling it or they’re just lying to us about keeping it private?
Can our Data actually be 100% safe online?
While we all struggle to keep our data safe, I believe it’s near impossible to keep it even up to 70% private in the online world, most of us also participate in online surveys who definitely sells our data for millions but pays us nickels.
So therefore, it’s on and on and on, I could write until the letters on my keyboard washes away but the big question remains:
Where do we start protecting our data from? from our somewhat corrupt government? our banks? payment systems we use? our mobile phone makers, our network providers?
I leave you to ponder on these thoughts as I have pondered over and over before finally accepting that until our last breath, our data on the internet will always be assessed and used in ways we cannot control or determine, with and without our consent.