Your next privacy problem – Bankrupt companies
You could be forgiven for assuming your data goes down with the company that collected it, but clearly it’s too valuable an asset to completely destroy. As the “surveillance economy” marches forward, this should especially be a concern in the digital age. What happens, for example, when/if struggling game studio Zynga files for bankruptcy? At its height, the company had 300 million active users who had freely given apps like Farmville access to their Facebook account, location info, and Internet habits through tracking cookies. Likewise, what happens to all the information Myspace, which once had 76 million users, has collected when that company inevitably falls? They sell it when they go bankrupt… Meaning your data will then be sold off again and again and again, likely outliving even you.
But the question goes further. Even stores you’ve only entered can now collect data from you, mostly in the name of finding new ways to advertise at you. While that can sound harmless enough—polls consistently show most Americans prefer convenience over any expectation of privacy—that data can now live past the existence of the company, meaning your personal information could one day be in the hands of a company you might not trust. Again, this is not theoretical blah blah. And again, lawyers are behind.. far [dailydot].