BIGtoken Weekly Data Privacy Roundup

Following the release of the Facebook papers, the stars might finally be aligned to compel the federal government to pass privacy legislation. In the meantime, Twitter’s new policy of removing images posted without consent shows that some tech companies are attempting to “do the right thing” when it comes to privacy issues.

 “Could the Facebook papers close the deal one privacy legislation,” Brookings Institute- December 1st, 2021

The Brookings Institute, one of the world’s foremost think tanks believes the disclosures from the Facebook Papers could finally be the impetus for the federal government to pass privacy legislation. This moment in time should not be wasted: it is time for the federal government to act.

Twitter says it will remove images of people posted without consent,” CNN- December 1st, 2021

In a very positive development, Twitter announced that it will remove images of people who have not consented to a posting on Twitter. The Company stated “sharing personal media, such as images or videos, can potentially violate a persons’s privacy, and may lead to emotional or physical harm.”  Kudos to Twitter for making this important change to its privacy policy.

In the wake of new privacy changes at Apple and Google, brands are formulating more personalized strategies to build brand awareness and loyalty. On the other hand, abuses such as Verizon’s blatant collection of browser history data continues to be revealed. 

Big Tech Privacy Moves Spur Companies to Amass Customer Data,” The Wall Street Journal- December 2nd, 2021

New privacy protections have made it more difficult for companies to target consumers with online advertisements. With Apple’s and Google’s new privacy changes, brands are using a wide variety of tactics to encourage users to give companies their data. For example, things like loyalty programs, sweepstakes, newsletters, QR codes, etc. However, these new data collection methods are only able to collect small amounts of data compared to huge tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon. Smaller brands are working on building their own robust databases to increase the effectiveness and lower costs for online ad campaigns. 

 “The Verizon app might be collecting your browsing history and more,” The Verge- December 5th, 2021

Not surprisingly, Verizon is likely collecting their user’s browser history and more. Verizon justifies their actions by claiming they are collecting data to “better understand your interests.” Verizon should be admonished for this brazen rationalization for collecting data. People need to be afforded the right to consent to the collection and use of data.