Artificial Intelligence is radically changing the concept of privacy as we know it.



Nowadays we constantly interact with technology that is designed to serve our needs and provide us with valuable, to each one of us individually, information. To do that, companies associated with those services collect data based on our behaviour. Personal data. Putting the user in the spotlight, It’s clear that technology has entered a new era. Various services using Artificial Intelligence technology are daily trying to understand each one of us better in order to serve our liking or to be useful to us personally. But Artificial Intelligence is based on data collection and the science of extracting information from the tones of data produced by the users. Personal information is being constanly processed by a plethora of algorithms, leading to a new kind of intrusion on what is considered to be our private life. Technology, more than ever before, is becoming an extension of ourselves and to do that, to provide a personalised experience, services require to know us better, sometimes even better than we know ourselves. I’m not sure if AI is already that good to be successful in its mission to understand and serve us well, but what I know for sure is that the data collected might not be processed by humans, but humans can certainly get access to it by intruding/hacking into any of these services, or simply because they have such access granted to them by the company that owns it. That is the exact reason why Big Data, a term that tends to refer to the use of predictive analytics and user behaviour analytics methods, creates huge challenges around privacy. Gartner predicts that in 2018, 50% of business ethics violations will be related to data. Technological advancements force the barrier that defines what is private and what is not to be redefined. This is why I suggest the introduction of the term "post-private" describing the personal data we willfully share with software but should still be considered as private. Collecting personal data has become a common practice, but what is not clear is who is currently in control of each individual's privacy. Who decides how to use the data collected and how vulnerable is every company’s system? As long as we embrace technology and we allow it to interfere with our personal information, is privacy becoming an irrelevant term? Are we still able to control and decide what we share with whom? Will we entrust companies with that decision in the future? New technologies, as they are unanimously adopted, are projected to become the catalyst that will change the concept of privacy forever.


*Graph: Post-private data is a term that wishes to describe the personal information that we choose to share with AI technology, such as location, health, money transaction, social connection, film and music preference etc.