Proof of Facebook presenter Frances Haugen has sparked a recent upheaval on the ongoing revelations about how companies and governments are making and selling our products. In an effort to put consumers back in the driver’s seat, recent changes to data protection laws such as the GDPR in the European Union and CCPA in California have mandated transparency and control as key pillars of privacy protection. In the words of the European Commission: “With your data – order!”
Empowering consumers by giving them feedback is a good goal that is very interesting. However, in the modern world order, domination is far less free than responsibility — something most of us are not prepared to do. Even if our brain were to perform the rapidly changing technologies, protecting and controlling human information would be a full-time job.
Think of it this way: Supervising your boat is a great experience if you are strolling along the Mediterranean Sea on a beautiful day. You can choose to be a beautiful little town to visit, and there are no wrong choices. Now imagine that you are the captain of a boat traveling in the middle of a storm. You do not know where to go, and none of your choices seem to be encouraging. Having the “freedom” to steer your ship for these reasons can not be fun, and it can easily end.
And yet, here’s what we do: The laws that exist now plunge people into the middle of a sea of professionalism and bless them with the right to direct what they know. Instead of forcing technology companies to make changes that would make the environment safer and more secure, we place a burden on protecting personal data for consumers. Doing so protects those who create more hurricanes than sailors.
In order for users to make the best use of their data, regulators must first create the right environment that ensures the necessary security, just as the Securities and Exchange Commission manages the financial world and protects people from making bad decisions. Under the right circumstances, people are able to choose between the positive outcomes, rather than the negative ones. In other words, we must first control the sea before we can give people the power to steer their boats. There are a number of ways that regulators can take immediate action to stabilize the water.
First, we need to make it more expensive for companies to collect and use their own data in tax evasion. If they have to pay the price for any data they collect, they will think twice if they really need it.
Supervisors are also required to order that consistency be established at a sufficient level of security. Most users should be protected only if they choose to otherwise, a concept called “privacy and design”. No one has time to create a secret to protect their full-time job. Protecting information should be easy. Confidentiality in production reduces conflicts on the path to secrecy, and ensures that fundamental rights are protected.