(WHTM) — Having a say in who has access to your online data has become more important to consumers, especially with data breaches on the rise. Now, some companies and lawmakers are making changes.
“A typical American being polled about 64% of them have been involved in some sort of data breach,” said Kyle Cook, with Universal Media Inc. in Mechanicsburg.
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The company Cook works for specializes in media analytics. The last time abc27 spoke with Cook, he said a new feature Apple would be offering consumers would give them more control over who has access to their information.
Now, when you download a new app on your iPhone, you get an alert asking if the app can track your data. “We’ve seen about 40 – 50% of consumers are clicking ask app not to track,” Cook added.
So, why are you being asked this question?
“For example, Facebook has its tracking software on about 60% of the top 100 mobile apps in the app store right now, so all that information if you think you are not really giving it to them or you are not giving your data out its actually being used to curate that specific messaging or product based on what you look at,” Cook said. “Based on what you do, based on your shopping behavior, and there absolutely is a fine line and balance between well I want the information specifically tailored to me and what I need to know versus how much data am I really giving up.”
Cook says Apple is preparing to take yet another step to protect consumer data. “Apple is releasing another privacy act that is going to make it more difficult to track consumers through email messaging and email marketing,” Cook added. “It’s a way for Apple to put themselves out further as a leader in the industry in protecting a consumer against their data being leaked if you will.”
Plus, lawmakers are getting involved, too. California recently passed the first Consumer Privacy Act in the United States.
“If your a business, that operates in California, have consumers within California, those consumers can reach out and ask what is my data being used for, please eliminate and delete my data, and please do not sell my data to other third party companies for targeting. So, California is the first state to really dive into this, I know Virginia is working through this right now as well but I’d envision in the next five to six years there’s going to be something along the lines across all states,” Cook said.
Cooks adds that the best way to protect yourself is with good passwords, and if you have too many to remember, try using a password manager.