Information Systems Integration – Tony Messina

Security, Privacy, and Free Services


Anyone who is familiar with the internet and the many services on it, is also familiar with the services which require no money to use. Some of the more popular examples being YouTube and Facebook, though there are still many more. This has allowed people from all backgrounds use these services that might otherwise be unavailable. It has come to the point that the notion of ‘free’ services has been taken for granted and is even expected. However, very few things in life are truly free, and these services are no exception.


With concerns over privacy, the methods that many business employ are becoming more widely known. One such method is the collection of consumer data for the sale of targeted advertisements. With personal information being collection all the time from anywhere, it is almost impossible to know in whose hands it may end up. With the rising cyber-attacks on large companies, the collection of personal data has become an issue of personal security, as well as privacy. For many, the price is worth it, however, for others the risk is too great.


Would you rather pay for the currently ‘free’ services if it meant more security, reliability, and/or privacy? Would you rather use ‘yourself’ as payment for such services, despite the privacy issue? Or do you believe that paying for services may increase privacy, but ultimately do nothing for security?

One Response to Security, Privacy, and Free Services

  • I would personally rather use myself as payment for the services as many of us already do, despite the privacy issue. I think a lot of this ties back to the background in data analytics that Temple has provided me with over the years, where I am able to appreciate the data that is collected through these methods rather than just seeing it as an invasion of privacy. With so many different companies marketing various products it is only natural that they use the customers as direction forms of information, even if this means collecting data through services that are not explicitly expressed to the customer. In my eyes, collecting information from individuals usage behind a computer is no different than a sales associate taking note of the items that customers are attracted to as they enter the store or the various comments that are made during conversations either with the sales associate or that can be overheard.

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