Privacy in times of internet, social media and big data: KVAB Standpunt 49

Berbers Yolanda, Willem Debeuckelaere, Paul De Hert, Yvo Desmedt, Frank De Smet, Mireille Hildebrandt, Karolien Poels, Jos Pierson, Bart Preneel, Joos Vandewalle

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The current use of the internet, social media and big data severely affects the privacy of ordinary users This positioning paper is primarily aimed at the private user young and old who did not have special education or training regarding ICT but still uses these services intensively and who, whether or not, rightly worries about the hazards to which his or her privacy is exposed This requires not only a better and deeper understanding of the technological possibilities and limitations, but also the commercial interests, and their relation to the constraints and threats of our personal privacy when using the many often valuable services. The speci c aspects of privacy as patients, or the privacy regulations for companies and institutions that track and process les with data from individuals, employees, students, or customers, is not dealt with but is referred to other reports This positioning paper has been conceived by a working group of members of KVAB and external experts covering the different aspects of this interdisciplinary subject, that have met regularly over a period of one year.
Since the ICT world is often overwhelmed with “jargon” words, the scope of which does not penetrate or because the newspapers sometimes describe very frightening lowly-backed situations, we rst discuss the main concepts both at the level of the machine learning, data extraction and the big data, as well as the privacy issues that arise, and nally the ways in which a better privacy can be acquired .
In order to make this more concrete for the modal reader, we discuss important privacy hazards in a number of concrete situations, such as the digital life of a family, the big data police in passenger pro les, the internet of things, the context of smart cities, distributed information versus central collection, autonomous vehicles, and location information Although this digital revolution is not over yet, the modal user can already modify his behavior.
There is extensive scienti c literature on this subject, but there are also many widely accessible texts available recently, including websites, to which the interested reader is referred to in the bibliography.
Translated title of the contributionPrivacy in times of internet, social media and big data
Original languageDutch
Place of PublicationBrussels
PublisherRoyal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Sciences and Arts (Engineering Comité)
Commissioning bodyKoninklijke Vlaamse Academie van België voor Wetenschappen en Kunsten (KVAB)
Number of pages59
ISBN (Print)978 90 6569 917 29
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameKVAB Standpunt 49


  • privacy
  • internet
  • sociale media
  • big data


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