Computers, Privacy & the Constitution

Effective ways to balance the data-driven economy and privacy rights

-- By RyotaSaito - 29 April 2022

1 Introduction

Today is the era of the "data-driven economy". Amazon shows you the products you are most likely to buy next based on a lot of data collected from users and your purchase history; Google similarly uses user data and your behavioral history (GPS location, word-of-mouth postings, etc.) to suggest restaurants that match your current mood and clothes that interest you. Today, such data-driven businesses have become the mainstream of global business in the 21st century across all industries. The problem with data-driven businesses is the violation of the privacy rights of the individuals whose data is being collected. There has been much discussion around the world about the balance between the data-driven economy and individual privacy (e.g., the introduction of GDPR in the EU), but no consensus has been reached and no one has reached a satisfactory outcome. Unfortunately, I too have not reached a satisfactory conclusion on this issue, but here are my current thoughts.

2 Data collection to be ideal

It goes without saying that it is most desirable to change the way the data-driven economy provides for freedom of thought and human individuality, and to minimize the collection of information on individual behavior. In reality, however, there is debate in Europe, the U.S., and elsewhere on the premise that data collection should be allowed and how consideration should be given to privacy violations (e.g., GDPR in the EU and privacy laws and regulations in California). Therefore, in light of this current situation, the following section considers the balance between a more privacy-conscious data-driven economy and privacy than is currently the case, assuming that a certain level of data collection is allowed.

3 It is not practical to stop data collection

As noted above, one ideal response would be to focus on protecting individual privacy and prevent companies from collecting personal data. However, as mentioned above, the global trend is not that way. Therefore, the next approach would be to allow data collection while giving some consideration to privacy. One way to achieve this "certain consideration" would be to obtain the consent of the individual whose data is to be collected. Even today, this is practiced by using services such as Google's services after consenting to the privacy policy. However, I believe that "obtaining data with the consent of the individual" is not realistic (and even if it has the appearance of being so, it is disguised). This is because the vast majority of people do not read privacy policies, and even if they did, their content would be incomprehensible to many. In addition, service providers take actions such as "if users do not agree to provide their information, I will not allow them to use our services or restrict their use of some of our services," effectively forcing users to give their consent. This method of relying on an individual's consent to waive privacy is problematic in that it is extremely likely that it is not actually based on the individual's true consent.

4 How to limit the provision of services using collected data

In considering the compatibility of the data-driven economy and privacy, I believe there are two situations: the first is the violation of privacy rights in data collection situations. As noted above, I believe that it is difficult to find an effective way to achieve a balanced balance in this regard. In this sense, I believe that the measures currently taken, specifically collecting data in a manner that individuals cannot be identified and obtaining consent through privacy policies (but not truly consenting), are realistic measures. The second situation in the compatibility of data-driven economy and privacy is in the context of data-intensive businesses. That is, a service provider takes some action against a user based on the collected data (e.g., displaying products that you might buy). In conclusion, I believe that a waiver of the right to privacy by the user is possible in this situation. The benefit the user receives is to receive customized suggestions based on his/her action history. (From the perspective of privacy rights, the problem is that the user is unconsciously manipulated by the service provider (i.e., made to go to a suggested restaurant or purchase a product based on the data collected). In this situation, if the user would rather not have data-based services provided to him or her in order to protect his or her right to privacy (right to self-determination) instead of giving up such a convenient feature, such as protecting his or her right to privacy (right to self-determination) by giving up such a benefit We believe that a decision can be made.

5 Conclusion

I believe at this point in time that the above method of balancing the data-driven economy and privacy may be a viable method that countries can adopt while striking a balance between the two.

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r3 - 29 Apr 2022 - 06:04:53 - RyotaSaito
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