Sun, Feb 24, 2013 - Page 9 News List

Privacy advocates shiver as era of wearable technology begins

Apple and Google are just two of the giants working on gadgets that were once the realm of sci-fi — but that also push the frontiers of the privacy debate

By Dominic Rushe  /  The Guardian, LONDON

“The hurdle will be: ‘Why do you need another device?’” Bhas said.

However, he said that it was clear Apple, Google and Microsoft all believe that computing is about to make another shift. The PC gave way to more mobile devices and now they are getting more portable still.

Amid all the technologically driven excitement, privacy advocates are increasingly concerned. Watchdog group Privacy Rights Clearinghouse is compiling a report on the safety of data generated from mobile devices. Director Beth Givens warns that people need to be very careful about the ways in which they adopt the new technology.

“You need to read their privacy policy. Quite a lot of these companies just plain don’t have one. There is always an issue with secondary users of the data. Who else is seeing this? Employers? Insurance companies?” she said.

Much of this data will be stored in the “cloud” — streaming to remote servers that Givens said “are not inherently secure.”

This is just the start. Google’s glasses will potentially be watching your every move.

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