Our behavior will change when we feel ‘surveillance’ by technology
Apple CEO Tim Cook is no stranger to criticizing other tech companies for tracking their users ’data. Now, he raises the ante – by saying that such data collection could be a widespread problem for society at large.
At the TIME100 Summit 2022 on Tuesday, Cook said he was “somewhat concerned” about tech companies tracking their users, as it could change the way most people behave and interact. each other.
“I’m so scared of losing privacy,” said Cook, 61. “If we start to feel like we’re being monitored all the time, then our behavior is changing. We’re starting to do less. We’re starting to. think about things less. You start to change your thinking. In a world like that where you control yourself, [it] changing society in a big way. “
Some studies show that people behave differently when they know they are being watched. In 2018, researchers from a Dutch university discovered that participants were “less likely to cheat” on exams when there were cameras. In an Axios survey published in 2019, some participants self-reported that observation affected their behavior, and 48% said monitoring could cause them to change their behavior. work.
Cook’s comments join a chorus of recent controversy surrounding technology and user data companies. Last month, more than one million Illinois residents received checks for up to $ 397 after Facebook settled a $ 650 million class action lawsuit. According to the plaintiffs, the platform collected facial recognition data without the user’s consent – which is illegal under Illinois state law.
Google Photos is at the center of a similar lawsuit, and as CNBC reported in 2017, all of Google’s platforms-including Gmail, Google Docs and the company’s eponymous search engine-store information such as your phone number, location data and websites you have visited.
Google maintains that it does not sell the personal information it stores, but instead uses it to curate personalized ads for its users. The company recently announced tools to help users request the removal of their personal data from its search results.
Google, Amazon and even Apple are also being criticized for collecting and reviewing audio samples from smart home systems. Google and Amazon eventually recognized their use of Google Assistant and Alexa expertise, providing opt-out options for users. Apple, which is generally viewed as more privacy -conscious than most of its rivals, has gone one step further by apologizing and suspending its “human grading” practice across all Siri services. .
Despite so many privacy issues in the world of technology, Cook said Tuesday that a heavy future surveillance is not yet a foregone conclusion. He said he was “optimistic” that tech companies would develop more ways to respect individuals’ data, though he did not specify whether those changes would be motivated by altruism, lawsuits or threats. of federal regulations.
“It’s hard to say that a company, or anyone for that matter, should get in and – on an unknown basis – vacuum your data,” Cook said.
Sign up now: Be smarter about your money and career with our weekly newsletter
do not let it pass:
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak: ‘Of all the Big Tech, Facebook is the No. 1 that I don’t like ‘
You can now ask Google to remove your personal data from its search results — here’s how