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Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Xbox One(984): Welcome to the PRISMdome

Do you have a store card or a points card?  Yes?  Guess what? Yep, you handed your personal details over, again.  But this is the fun part, every time you buy an item it registers that against your account.  Bingo, your supermarket knows you have size 11 shoes, only wear jeans and t-shirts, have a particular fancy to oranges, a gluten allergy, prefer red to white wine and love a juicy steak.  What has this got to do with privacy?  Your supermarket has just sold your wine preference to that mail order wine company and your gluten allergy to a specialist cake company, all of whom will be emailing or posting to you details of their fine products.  Oh and after they have done that, well why don’t they just pass it on to one of their partners?

Wow, your personal information doesn’t seem that personal anymore does it?  You have past it on to 5 companies, who have passed it on to another 5, who have chosen to sell it onto 5 more.  That 125 companies that hold your personal information, with each firm employing anywhere from a couple to thousands of employees, you are not that private.

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Lets move on to the other areas, how about your thoughts and dreams?  They’re safe right?  Of course they  are, I’m being stupid, they’re in your head and unless people can read minds or have access to a Nygma machine your okay.   Oh hello, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, what are you doing here?  Well while you are here let me tell you what I’m doing and thinking.  Even better let me show you with these lovely photographs I have taken with Instagram.  That’s right, we are now freely offering our thoughts and opinions to the big wide world for all to see and store away.  We all have that friend who posts about how awesome their life is, the one who constantly sounds like they’re on suicide watch, and the one who posts all those pictures of their child at bath time.

You want to keep your thoughts private between you and your friend? Well that’s fine, you can use email to send a private message.  Nobody would every look at your emails right?  Wrong, email companies often scan your emails to provide you with better advertising and relevant articles.  Google even provide you with adverts at the top of your Gmail inbox that relate to the content of your emails and your browsing history.  All those adverts for mature lonely women available now in your area, I’d look at your browsing history or ask your husband.  Now they have read your emails, logged your browsing history, what do they do?  What every company does, they sell your profile on to affiliates and third party companies.

Young woman in her twenties using an Apple iPhone“Ah, but what about my text messages?  Haha I got you there.” Wow, you did, you got me good… Oh, but before you go, your on your apple right? You sync and backup your phone regularly… Yep, your messages are stored on a server for them to access.  Not on apple? Okay, do you backup your messages by syncing to your computer or via a third party app?  You have again shared your text messages to the worlds servers.

So you now hopefully realise that you have constantly given you personal details and private information to the big wide world and you are more well known than you realised.  So why so much rage?  The information PRISM is collecting and Xbox want to collect is already out there.  The only difference is consent right?  Sure, you have the option to click that little consent box at the bottom of websites, you know the ones that say if you want your details passed on or not.  But guess what?  Xbox are offering the same thing with their Kinect, you can chose what information they collect and share.  That’s more that what Google offer their email customers.  Sure it’s less than what PlayStation do, but they firstly, don’t have a Kinect and secondly, they were hacked, that’s not very secure now is it? 

So this Nerd rage over the snooping of the Kinect and its unacceptable information gathering, I have news for you, you can restrict it and then, if you still feel that is not enough just take a good look at all the information you have already shared and will do in future.  You are still in a rage over your civil rights and privacy? Then don’t buy the new Xbox and throw away your computer, stop your online gaming and shopping.  You have a choice, you have the rights.  No like? No buy, it’s that simple.  I’d rather just switch it off and chose what I share.

Lets be honest, how many of you have an open Facebook profile?  This has, if you access via a mobile device, your mobile number, your email address, many of you have even ‘checked in’ to your actual homes for the world to see where you live and you openly advise when you are not home.  This Microsoft nerd rage is a ridiculous media and crackpot hyped scaremongering campaign that has Sony rubbing their hands as they watch the cash roll in.  Because they don’t keep and sell your data at all.

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