The New Age of “Augmented Reality” – Nothing and No Where to Hide! – 08/05/11

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,

For Your Entertainment (FYE)

“Using the unnerving term “augmented reality,” Acquisiti conjures up disturbing scenarios that involve law enforcement officials, marketers and other strangers constantly marrying offline and online data.  Observers could overlay detailed information like political affiliation on pictures of crowds at protests, for example, creating a scary new form of crowd control, he suggested. Meanwhile, facial images could succeed in creating a national ID where enhancements to driver’s licenses have repeatedly failed,  said Acquisti in his report, titled “Privacy in the Age of Augmented Reality.”

“Notwithstanding Americans’ resistance to a Real ID infrastructure, as consumers of social networks we have consented to a de facto Real ID that markets and information technology, rather than government and regulation, have created,” it said.”

“In other words, you can’t get lost in a crowd anymore.

“(The technologies) make possible a world of personally predictable information, linkable from someone’s face, through end-users’ devices connected to the Internet,” the report concludes. “While anyone posting facial images of themselves on the Internet must realize that they may be recognized by strangers or friends, the possibility might seem remote.”  Now, it’s not, the report argues.”

“The researchers didn’t stop there.  Next, they linked the photos and names to student likes and dislikes gleaned from their profiles, with about 75 percent accuracy. Then, they combined this effort with work Acquisti had done in 2009 on predicting Social Security numbers, and found that they could predict the Social Security number for 28 percent of the subjects within four guesses. Finally, they built a mobile phone application that could achieve the same results while wandering around campus.

To refresh: Starting from a mere photo, they were able to determine name, friends, even SSNs. “

It may be time to remind ourselves of the Chinese proverb: “The Best Closed Door, is the Door that You Can Leave Open……”

Big Hugs and Kisses to All!  ;+)


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