Your Mobile Life and the Need to Protect It

Wearable technology and mobile devices will increase privacy and security concerns for consumers.

One of the hottest trends in IT as of late has been the ever increasing number of wearable, mobile devices to help you always stay connected. This trend is still in its infancy as companies are just discovering new ways to have the consumer wear their mobile technology. I was able to attend Mobile World Congress in February, where I was able to see firsthand the growing number of innovative wearable, mobile devices. These mobile devices now far exceed the “simple” smart phone sitting in your pocket and with this growing number of wearable, mobile technology items, it is important to protect yourself so that all of your information doesn’t become someone else’s data.

There are dozens of new wearables technologies that allow you to remain connected throughout your day. These devices can enable you to stay on top of your busy work schedule, keep up with your new found fitness, or even document your day in a series of pictures.

With all of these great new mobile technologies helping us manage our lives it is easy to forget about all of the information these devices are gathering and where that information is going.

FitBit is a great example of new innovative wearable, mobile technology that is recording and tracking your every move. FitBit tracks numerous behaviors including your sleep patterns, how long you’re active during the day, calories burned, and your location. FitBit also gives you the opportunity to track and share your fitness progress. This kind of technology is great for people who want to take control of their fitness and learn their progress, but do they know where their personal fitness data is going?

I did a little digging into their privacy policy and the information is consistent with many wearables device privacy policies. They are able to store and use any information that you are storing on the device and are able to access all social media profiles that are active on the device. This information is to be used for improving the customer experience, but the information can also be shared with some of the FitBit partners to better the experience for their customers.

Although this doesn’t come across as an invasive act or an abuse of the information you’re making available, it does raise some flags. This is just the beginning of the wearable, mobile device revolution. As I saw at Mobile World Congress, this is a growing industry with new ways to help you connect coming out every year. Soon almost everything we wear will be tracking and storing data on your habits and actions. The potential is there for all of this information to no longer exist on a two way street between you and the device provide, but rather your data might end up traversing the immense data highway between many different companies.

So as you contemplate purchasing that new hot smart watch, Google Glass, or fitness wearable, make sure to keep in mind that everything you do while using the device can be stored and used by someone you were not expecting.

Abe Gladstone
By Abe Gladstone | August 19, 2014

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