Are You Aware That You’re An Information Prostitute?

Every day you sell off a little bit, of you.

Everyday, without giving it a moments thought, your wishes, dreams, desires and countless other tidbits of information about you that makes you you, you prostitute for the use of an app.

The world in which we live now, a place where personal information is more valuable than gold, it is all but inevitable. Perhaps you do what you can to avoid this robbery of yourself, such as not performing searches with Google or Yahoo, but instead using the private search company DuckDuckGo, which collects Nothing about your searches, Nothing.

One can diligently go through their Privacy settings on Facebook, HA I just made a joke, putting the words Privacy and Facebook in the same sentence. That’s an oxymoron if I ever heard one.

One can also read the privacy statements as they install the latest apps on their phones. Though asking people to take a moment and read something nowadays is stretching it, and I will admit, reading one of those privacy policies is akin to reading a foreign language, and they are so damn long and confusing, leaving your head spinning in a daze.

Defeated, we just usually give up, and tap the Accept Icon.

Information Prostitutes.

This is what we have become. In order to use a FREE APP, for either Apple or Android phones, we are prostituting ourselves by giving up our personal information and privacy.

Gameloft, one of the worlds biggest producer of games for consoles and mobile platforms, offers FREE games for download. However looking at the true price you pay for these FREE games you begin to realize the true costs.

Gameloft: Information we collect

Gameloft collects only adequate and relevant information limited to the purposes defined hereunder.

  • Contact information (such as your name and email address)
  • Your age
  • Your username and password
  • Information about your interactions with other players
  • General geolocation information
  • Precise geolocation information (GPS)
  • Information that we receive if you decide to connect to a third-party social network (such as Facebook or Game Center)
  • Information from billing partners (if you subscribe to some games or make an in-game purchase)
  • Information for advertising and analytics purposes, so we can provide you with better Services

etc etc etc……

For the complete Privacy Policy for Gameloft click here:

Upon reading the Privacy Policy you will come across words and phrases used to describe the collection of and transmitting of your personal information, such as:

adequate level of protection=satisfactory or acceptable in quality or quantity.

we provide adequate protection for the transfer of personal information.

while we strive to protect your information, we cannot guarantee the security of your information and do not assume any responsibility for the unauthorised use of, or access to, your information that is under our control.

Mind you, this is NOT A HIT PEICE on Gameloft. It is just an unpleasant fact, practically every FREE app handles their business as such, collecting your personal information, and selling it to others who require it, want it, need it. All the while providing you with an adequate level of protection in safely storing and transmitting your Personal Information.

Sound like a fair trade?

“THE BEST WAY TO PROTECTED YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION IS TO NOT COLLECT IN THE FIRST PLACE.” CRYPVISER GMBH

What about PAID Apps?

Ok, so Free apps are not truly free, I mean everyone knows this, how else could the developer of the App make any money? They need to sell your data to pay the bills. But what about a Paid App, do they also sell your personal information?

I decided to do a little personal soul searching on this one.

Right now, beside me is my iPhone, along with an empty can of some crispy ring things, and a freshly opened can of peanuts.

I will take a look at the Apps which I have Paid for and go through their privacy policy to see if they are just intrusive as the Free Apps.

Hmmmm, I don’t have any Apps on my Iphone which I paid for. I have numerous on my iPad but not for my phone.

Ahh Wait, I found one, ok however, this will give you a little insight about me as a person. I am, in some way, a nerd. Back in the 1980’s I was (and still am) an avid Dungeons and Dragons fan. Staying up until dawn, slaying dragons, toppling corrupt Kings and Barons and traveling an imaginary world looking for loot and magical items, ahhh those were the days. Sigh……

Anyway I do have an App which I paid for, a throwback to the old style Pen and Paper Role Playing Games, in fact the title of the game is:

Knights of Pen and Paper.

So, I would assume that this company would make its money from the sales of the game, $9.99 and therefore would have no need to collect any of my personal information to sell off. Lets take a look at the Privacy Policy shall we.

Knight of Pen and Paper is created by Paradox Interactive, upon searching their website I discovered this:

We promise to keep your data safe and to not to sell your data to third parties. We promise to give you the right to access and delete your data, and to provide you with ways to manage and review your marketing choices as well as any other information.

WHAT DATA DO WE COLLECT?

  • email address
  • username
  • country of residence
  • age or date of birth
  • name
  • password(s) created to access parts of the Services
  • nicknames on forums and in games
  • physical address
  • telephone number
  • card information payment account details
  • PayPal account information
  • name and contact information for a business or organization

Ok, so even though they still collect all this data on me, they promise not to sell it.

How safe is the storage of this data ?

Is it stored the Old Fashioned Way, on a Central Server ?

Is my personal information Encrypted ?

This is just one App, and yes I understand that companies collect email addresses in order to send you special offers and what-not, and yes there are some in which you can Opt out of. But come on man, if these companies really want to keep your personal information safe, DONT COLLECT IT IN THE FIRST PLACE!

We Can Never Go Back.

The times of going into a store, buying something and leaving no trace of who you are is gone, or at least it’s dwindling fast. Paying cash for some things can help you keep your personal information private, as long as you dont use one of those Loyalty Cards.

So, what to do ?

Google and Facebook have direct influence over 70% of the internet, they are data gathering Monsters, and we’ve all become like 1976 Ford Pintos, though instead of leaking oil everywhere we go, we leak our Personal Information, whether we know it or not !

Let’s start with something simple. We all use the internet, we all use a search engine. Try using something different other than Google or Yahoo.

Try DuckDuckGo as your default search engine, it collects nothing of your searches, it does not keep track of which sites you visit, take back something of yourself, you are worth more than just Ones and Zeros.

Try using a different Instant Messenger, one that doesn’t STEAL all of your contacts. One that offers you a service and in return collects NOT ONE PIECE of your personal information, no name, no email, no mobile number, nothing, and like DuckDuckGo doesn’t collect or store anything about you.

Or continue to Prostitute yourself out for an Instant Messenger or a Search Engine, it’s your decision.

INFORMATION PROSTITUTES

Is this what we have become ?

Are you comfortable with this title ?

Do we truly care so little about our Privacy ?

What happened to the days of Buying a product, and in return receiving a service ?

Are we truly that cheap ?

Look in the mirror, ask yourself, or better yet tell yourself:

“I am using myself to pay for an app”

Word it anyway you want, your just a prostitute, an Information Prostitue.

Seattle Native. Free Speech Advocate.

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