Data Mining: Big Corporations Are Gathering and Selling Every Shred Of Information About You That They Can
Michael Snyder, Contributor
Friday, June 22, 2012
When most people think of “Big Brother”, they think of the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, the Department of Homeland Security and other shadowy government agencies. Yes, they are definitely watching you, but so are many big corporations. In fact, there are some companies that are making tens of millions of dollars by gathering every shred of information about all of us that they can and selling it for profit to anyone willing to pay the price. It is called “data mining”, and these data miners want to keep track of literally everything that you do.
Most people know that basically everything that we do on the Internet is tracked, but data mining goes far beyond that. When you use a customer rewards card at the supermarket, the data miners know about it. When you pay for a purchase with a credit card or a debit card, the data miners know about it. Every time you buy a prescription drug, that information is sold to someone. Every time you apply for a loan, a whole host of organizations is notified.
Information has become an extremely valuable commodity, and thanks to computers and the Internet it is easier than ever before to gather information. But that also means that our personal information is no longer “private”, and this trend is only going to get worse in the years ahead.
You have probably never even heard of many of these companies that are making millions of dollars selling your personal information. Acxiom and Epsilon are two of the biggest names in the industry, and most of the time they are selling your information to companies that want to sell you stuff.
Almost every single day, very personal information about you is being bought and sold without your permission and it is all perfectly legal.