As the internet has evolved, so have problems in general. In recent years, we’ve woken up to the fact that our personal data is one of the most valuable assets in the world right now. It’s also increasingly apparent that we don’t control that data.
Edward Snowden may be a controversial figure, but he was among the first to expose the stark reality of this problem back in 2014. When we discovered that the NSA had been using Google data to spy on citizens in the name of national security, it seemed like it could be a watershed moment.
After Congress handed President Trump legislation Tuesday that would wipe away landmark privacy protections for Internet users, we received a lot of reader questions about what happens next. The legislation makes it easier for Internet providers, such as AT&T and Verizon, to collect and sell information such as your Web browsing history and app usage. But let’s get into the details: You wanted to know whether the measure could help the government dig up dirt on people. You asked how to protect your privacy. And some of you even asked if it would be possible to buy up the online browsing histories of Trump or members of Congress.
To find out, I spoke to a number of privacy and security experts who have been following these issues closely in the public and the private sectors.