What if I had some magical powers to access all information about you or any person on earth?
I would know your age, where you work, your name, where you live, how you commute to work, the route you take, where you go for vacation, your favorite hangout joint, and even how many people live in your house. I would be very aware of your financial status, your spending habits, your sleep and waking habits, how you keep fit, what you like reading, and even the sports team that you support.
I would know your friends, your business partners, your hidden secrets like extramarital relationships, and would keep an eye on the people that you regularly message or talk to.
Power of information
How would this information be useful?
I could find a way to make use of this information to my advantage. I will tell my friend in the tours and travel industry that you are planning to go for a holiday so that they can reach out to you and make some money out of you by giving you some good deals. I could alert your health insurance provider that since you have been searching for all symptoms of brain cancer, they should thoroughly screen you and declare it a preexisting condition. I could tell your potential employer that you seem to spend too much time on social media during the day and late hours of the night, thus your work ethics might be wanting.
I could even tell your spouse that they should just go on and file for the divorce because I have seen your exchange some messages with that person that they suspect that you are cheating on them with and that you visit them regularly in their home.
I could inform your lecturer that the answers you gave on the assignment seem to have been quickly lifted from the internet rather than well researched, and they should put that into consideration when grading you. I can tell a potential mortgage provider that since you are always in debt, they should be wary of you.
The possibilities are endless.
Some of the applications would be to your advantage, others neutral, while others would be detrimental to your wellbeing. In exchange, I would charge these people for this information and I would be rich!
The all-knowing platforms
Such information is too much for any single person to hold, and the idea that someone could have such information about you sounds creepy. We never like to have people stalking us. Unfortunately, there exists a ‘person’ who has this information.
Most digital platforms that we use today have that information. Google knows that information about you. Your mobile service provider has access to such information. Facebook has such information about you. This includes the data that they have collected from you when you voluntarily gave them the data or when you accepted some terms and conditions which you have no idea what they are about.
Various platforms have this data and they are using it exactly in this way. They take advantage of this data can predict a lot about you. They give this data to the people who need it in exchange for money. With every data they get, they keep refining a profile of you that they have created based on the data that they collected. They are becoming omniscient.
That is our world today.
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