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Obama demands review of Big Data industry in light of privacy

Obama demands review of Big Data industry in light of privacy

President Obama in his recent speech at the Justice Department has urged the National Security Agency (NSA) to improvise on security of networks to protect important user information.Obama Big Data

In his address Obama showed concern over security, especially because of a year full of privacy upheavals, thanks to the prominent Edward Snowden leaks, which exposed facts about NSA tapping foreign fiber optic cables and cracking encryption protocols of famous tech companies. Obama opined that such leaks have made the task of national security difficult.

Big companies likes Google and Facebook, based on recent events of information theft, have already strengthened their security systems. Understanding the position, Obama has advised the NSA to review the current role of its security apparatus and to understand how widespread future Internet surveillance programs need to be.

US government has understood the complexities of Big Data analytics and has realized the benefits enterprises have reaped with data interpretation at such large magnitude. President has ordered a comprehensive review of Big Data analytics and privacy, for this, a group of government officials will be constituted who will work in tandem with President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and reach out to business leaders and privacy experts to understand how public and private sectors are facing the challenges imposed by Big Data.

The presidential working group will examine how private and public companies are collecting Big Data and how the collection of avalanche of data and its analysis for purposes besides intelligence and law enforcement is affecting privacy.

In his speech, Obama has guaranteed reforms in safeguarding the privacy of Americans by providing transparency and protecting personal information offline and online. Thus, prima-facie motive of reviewing the Big Data analytics and privacy is to comprehend how NSA can promote free flow of information consistently with both security and privacy, and to identify areas where reform in policies might be required to restrain Big Data technologies.

3 Big Problems Big Data Will Probably Create in Near Future

3 Big Problems Big Data Will Probably Create in Near Future

Big Data has undoubtedly been the biggest buzzword in the past one year. One can look back at the just concluded 2013 and consider it as the breakthrough year for the term Big Data.

Big_Data challengesBig Data may not be an outright term in innovation but it certainly is in awareness. In spite of the Big Data receiving more attention in the mainstream, there are business and individuals who still confuse the term and use it inappropriately.

All things said, business enterprises are investing big time in Big Data with the motive to have the best from advanced data analytics. As mobile data, internet data and cloud data trends multiply, a need for more sound Big Data adaptation platforms such as Hadoop have been felt. Though, real potential of Big Data is still very abstract to nail down, the ramifications and business challenges it will create have already begun to show from.

Let us read on for three most important problems Big Data analytics will probably create in the near future.

  1. 1.    Legal and privacy are risk issues

Big Data can be used for good, and obviously it can be harnessed for the betterment of the society. But it can also be abused! So, not everything is sunny about Big Data. Since the accumulation of data means more threat to privacy, privacy challenges around Big Data are nothing new. It may be the dark side of Big Data but an average consumer has begun to understand the implication.

This becomes challenge since enterprises use Big Data to benefit from advanced analytics. It is believed (and explained by Sand Hill survey) that almost 62 percent enterprises use Hadoop for advanced analytics it can provide.

In 2014, Big Data with the rise of Internet of Things, leading to more mobile data, drone data, sensory data and even image data is bound to create more legal concerns over Big Data privacy. This, as explained, because consumers are becoming more aware of the real impacts of Big Data on their lives. It is therefore important for enterprises to remain ahead with compliance law and keep themselves to date with changing data protection laws.

2.    Human decision making Vs. data-driven decision making

As more businesses pursue Big Data to drive their decision making, there is soon going to be a clash in ways of doing things. As MIT Sloan School of Management research scientist Andrew McAfee points out, most management education programs train employees to trust their gut. Trusting the gut feeling is the old way of decision making, so changing it with data-driven decision making can lead to conflict. Becoming data-driven will require businesses to undergo a paradigm shift, since whether the company is data driven or not will become the competitive differentiator between successful and not so successful businesses.

3.    Big Data used for discrimination

Many research projects based on the use of Big Data have raised concerns of data being used for discrimination in addition to looming privacy concerns.

Researchers including Kate Crawford of Microsoft suggest that Big Data is being used speedily for precise forms of discrimination. We are not new to discrimination, but Big Data creates a new form of automated discrimination. Researchers suggest that social media and health care are the most vulnerable.

To safeguard against the issue of discrimination, organizations can create transparent Big Data usage policies in order to protect consumer data.

 

Is Big Data a Threat to Your Privacy?

Is Big Data a Threat to Your Privacy?

Big Data is growing bigger every day and along with it the concern over invasion of privacy is also growing. Tracking all the data generated by your mobile and other devices and your interactions on social media, is beneficial for advertisers to tailor their ads to suit you. But there’s more to the story than that. Companies have now begun to come up with very creative ways to use real time data.

Let’s look at some interesting examples.

Smart Rubbish Bins in London

An advertising firm in London came up with the idea to use strategically placed dustbins to track the wifi signal of phones of the people passing by. They could use the serial number of the phones to track the movement of every individual. They could then use this data to show advertisements on the screen of these bins, that are targeted at the person passing by.

smartbins

Now even dustbins are becoming smart!

The officials have asked Renew, the responsible ad firm, to take down the smart dustbins as there has been a lot of concern about the invasion of privacy of the people.

Police Cars in Australia get Number Plate Recognition Cameras

The Aussies have come up with another great use of Big Data by using number plate recognition cameras that can read multiple number plates simultaneously and also search their database to find out all the information about that driver. They can tell if a car is stolen or if you have unpaid parking tickets just by looking at your car’s number plate.

police car

The hand of the law gets longer.

Are Such Examples a Threat to Your Privacy?

When CCTV cameras first came on the scene, the public responded to them with an outrage similar to what we see now in terms of Big Data. But once people got used to the new technology and saw the benefits in solving crimes and catching miscreants swiftly, the fears of Big Brother always watching them subsided.

The truth is that people will allow collection of any data as long as it is collected with their permission and it is used to create value for them. Instead of shoving ads in people’s faces, companies should try to find other ways to use Big Data, not only to reduce costs for the company but also to provide quality to the customer.

One great example to highlight the creative use of Big Data is the potential for insurance companies. Today all natural or man made calamities generate a lot of data in the social media.

data

Data about Hurricane Sandy

Insurance companies can use this data along with before and after images on Google Maps Street View, Flickr, Instagram etc. to find out how much destruction of property their clients have suffered.

torn houseThey can estimate the number and amount of claims that they will have to deal with. They can provide quick claim settlements to their customers which will be appreciated by all and people will readily agree to data collection if they are told of such rewards.

Great Opportunities

A Westpac survey showed that it only took 30 months for mobile usage to reach 1 Million as compared to 80 months it took for online usage to reach the 1 Million mark.

graphThis means that there are great opportunities available to use this rapidly growing Big Data but it will have to be done with care and while keeping the interests of the consumer in mind.