You Have Been Hacked
by Stephen Wunderli
Posted November 24, 2019
Most of us don’t give much thought to our online privacy, and if we do it’s with some mild annoyance. We know we are being tracked, our shopping habits catalogued, our likes and dislikes logged, even our political inclinations are recorded somewhere. It’s easy to brush off until we consider what would happen if all that data collected was somehow used against us.
Used against us in “an Enemy of the State” kind of way?
Possibly. But more likely in a way that is manipulative or exploitative. To understand, we need to review how the Internet works. We all have our connections: phones, laptops, desktops. These have a unique address or phone number so that when any activity from that device goes out to the Internet, it can be traced back to the device. When we visit a site we are actually accessing another computer, or a room full of computers. Every site attaches a secret tracking code on your device so they know where you go next, and where you went before you arrived. Most sites track your selections, the articles you read, the ads you click on. They add that to the information you enter. Everything you do online is stored in a big data cloud somewhere. Some of the information you even agreed to share. More…