Tuesday, February 01, 2005

This scenario is not too far away

As noted earlier on BoingBoing, this link to the ACLU's clip may be closer to the truth that we can imagine. I've had the pleasure of working with different vendors on several technologies that come very similar to this all under the umbrella of CRM.

In a nutshell, we want to run a large company as a small business.How do we do that? By enabling all pieces of customer information in the hands of the company representative.

Let's say that you are calling your mobile phone carrier. It is likely that they have all the phone numbers you dialed. They also have your social security number. It is not inconcievable now that they can get a lot of information about - who you dial the most, or who calls you the most; they can link with a host of publicly available information, crossreference your email id with all public accounts and get consumer data from Axciom and similar providers about your details.

What will the company rep do with all this information at their fingertips? Something very similar to the video clip above. All the public domain knowledge must be balanced responsibly with commercial interests. Unfortunately, I'm not sure if taking a legal approach to this problem is the only solution.... shouls software vendors be held accountable for explicit violations of privacy?

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