Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Wireless Communication ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: Wireless Communication
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: eddieh-ga
List Price: $50.00
Posted: 27 Oct 2003 10:11 PST
Expires: 26 Nov 2003 10:11 PST
Question ID: 270127
Personal Privacy and the Internet

Request for Question Clarification by journalist-ga on 27 Oct 2003 10:18 PST
Greetings Eddieh:

Would you be more specific regarding the nature of the research you
seek?  I'd be happy to answer but your question is very general and I
want to be certain that I research the correct areas of your topic.

Best regards,

Request for Question Clarification by omniscientbeing-ga on 27 Oct 2003 10:41 PST

As journalist-ga points out, your Question is quite general. If you
could provide additional details of what it is you seek, it may help.

Google Answers Researcher
Subject: Re: Wireless Communication
Answered By: omniscientbeing-ga on 27 Oct 2003 16:31 PST

The website is an excellent source of information and news
on this subject:

[ ].

The following link is to a Hong Kong Digital 21 webpage that discusses
“Personal Privacy on the internet:

[ ].

An excerpt:

“Your Privacy Right include the right to confirm your data is held,
right of access, right of correction, right to be informed of use,
right to fair collection, right to give only necessary data, right to
consent to a change of use, right to openness and the right to
accuracy and security.”

The next link is to an article from Electronic Design’s website
entitled, “Personal Privacy Issues Abound As The Internet Evolves”:

[ ].

An excerpt:
“Most companies collecting the information do a good job of protecting
the data and usually provide a very visible policy statement
clarifying what will be done with the data that you provide. The
positive side of data collection and management by these companies,
however, has become overshadowed by a number of overzealous and in
some cases, unscrupulous companies that either retarget your
information or peddle it to other companies. Early stages of this have
already appeared in many credit-card companies and even government
agencies, like the Department of Motor Vehicles, that frequently sell
or rent slices of their databases.”

With the widespread use of the world wide web, all major companies and
corporations now have what is known as a “Privacy Policy” in order to
deal with the legal ramifications of handling personal information of
clients, potential clients and business partners. The privacy policies
state explicitly what type of info they collect or do not collect or
might collect, and for what purposes—indeed, note that searching for
“personal information” on Google takes you to many corporate privacy
policies on the first page of search results, including IBM’s Privacy
Policy, which is the #1 search result returned (which you go to
directly if you click the “I’m Feeling Lucky” Google button after
typing keywords “privacy policy” into the search box. Let’s look at
IBM’s “privacy practices on the web”:

[ ].

Note the following quote from their “Personal Information” section on
this page:

“You may choose to give us personal information in a variety of
situations. For example, you may want to give us information, such as
your name and address or e-mail id, to correspond with you, to process
an order, or to provide you with a subscription. You may give us your
credit card details to buy something from us or a description of your
education and work experience in connection with a job opening at IBM
that you wish to be considered for.”

This is a concise run-down on the majority of types of personal
information companies collect, and their purpose.

From the “Using and Sharing Personal Information” section from the
same IBM page:

“The following paragraphs describe in more detail how IBM may use your
personal information and with whom we may share it. Depending on the
type of IBM Web site you are visiting, one or more of the paragraphs
may apply. For example, if you order a product from an IBM Web site,
your information will be handled as described in such paragraphs as
Fulfilling Your Transaction Request and Marketing Use.”

I reiterate that you should read this page
[ ] in its entirety, as well as some
other corporate privacy policy pages. Here’s a link to the Intel
Corporation’s privacy policy:
[ ].
An excerpt from this Intel page:

“We will only use your personal information in the ways specified when
it was collected. We will not subsequently change the way in which we
use your personal information, unless you consent to the new usage.”

What is “personal information” as it relates to privacy? Personal
information is information relating to a specific individual which
distinguishes that individual from others. The most basic personal
information is name (last, first, and middle or middle initial),
street address (which includes street address, unit #, city, state,
country and zip or postal code with zip extension if applicable) (and
mailing address if it differs from the physical address), telephone
numbers (home and/or mobile, i.e. “cellular”) and e-mail address (or
addresses if the person has more than one). A person’s citizenship,
marital status and number of children may also be related to this type
of personal identification. This basic information, if known, allows
that person to be contacted for whatever reason.

Beyond this basic level of personal information is a deeper, more
sensitive level relating financial histories. The lynchpin of this
information (in the U.S.) is the social security number (SSN), or
“Taxpayer ID Number.” Besides the SSN, other types of personal
information on this level include the person’s credit card numbers,
and any other financial account numbers, such as bank account numbers.

Yet another level of personal information revolves around “histories,”
such as credit reports, consumer loan reports, mortgage records and
student loan history. Also, whether or not the person is a home-owner.
Past address histories (i.e., all addresses where the person lived for
the last 10 years) are also considered personal information. Also,
employment histories, (such as name of company, dates worked and
salary) are personal information.

Another area of personal information is that of criminal history and
driving (DMV) records. Records of any misdemeanors or felonies,
sometimes even traffic infractions or even if the person was ever
charged with such a crime, is information that is worth something to
someone at some time. DMV information such as what states the person
has or has had a driver license or ID in, whether or not their driver
license is valid, and their current and past vehicle registration
information, including make and model.

Also, educational background, such as degrees held or not held
(verification of degrees), specific schools attended, and even GPA is
another area of personal information.

The other major area of personal information is that of medical
history. Any diagnosed medical conditions (i.e. diabetes), whether the
person is a smoker, drug user or alcoholic is all medical information
that is typically verified by insurance companies.

Okay, we’ve covered the fundamental types of personal information. As
you can see, this basic information which many of us take for granted
is quite serious in terms of being able to paint a picture of a person
you don’t even know. Now, let’s move on to the purposes of defining
this information. Furthermore, most or all of this information is
available on the internet or WWW to someone. Different states have
different laws pertaining to different types of information, such as
DMV, criminal, educational, medical and financial, but there is always
someone who has legal access to it.

This information is what “Internet Privacy” measures, safeguards and
laws are meant to protect.

The following series of Google search restuls links will lead you to a
myriad of further resources on the subject of internet personal

Google search strategy:


“internet privacy”:

“internet personal privacy”:

“internet personal privacy issues”:

“internet personal privacy information”:

Also, conduct all of the above searches substituting “WWW” for
As your Question was quite general, please do not hesitate to ask for
Clarification to this Answer if you would like more specific
information on any particular areas, or examples.

Good luck on your project!


Google Answers Researcher

Request for Answer Clarification by eddieh-ga on 27 Oct 2003 23:49 PST
These answers are quite general. I could not open the Hong Kong 21
webpage site.  I conducting a research on "personal privacy and the
Internet."  To clarification my question further, would like to see
graphics, diagrams, and pictures depicting the statistical data on the


Request for Answer Clarification by eddieh-ga on 27 Oct 2003 23:52 PST
These answers are quite general. I could not open the Hong Kong 21
webpage site.  I conducting a research on "personal privacy and the
Internet."  To clarification my question further, would like to see
graphics, diagrams, and pictures depicting the statistical data on the
subject. So far your answers are excellent


Clarification of Answer by omniscientbeing-ga on 28 Oct 2003 09:36 PST

I tested the Digital 21 link and found it to be working. Give it
another try: 

Also, here's a link to the Google search results page for 
"personal privacy internet statistics":

which has many more relevant links to your topic, including this one: and this one: 


"Key Market Statistics & Consumer Behavior
Only 2 out of every 10 attempts to make purchases online result in a
sale. Internet businesses are cutting themselves out of $6.1 billion
in sales because online shoppers shun invasive information requests
and are wary of giving their credit card information online, among
other factors

A.T. Kearney November 2000

Out of a list of eight policy issues, 56% of adults responded that
they are “very concerned” about a loss of personal privacy. The
category came in second out of the eight, beating out such topics as
healthcare, crime and taxes. 57% of respondents that had not bought
online in the past year cite two main reasons: fear that their credit
card number will be stolen if given online, and concern that their
personal information may be abused.

Harris Poll, October 2000

When asked if “people who go online put their privacy at risk,” almost
two-thirds (63.6%) of Internet users and more than three-quarters
(76.1%) of non-users either agree or strongly agree. 41% of those who
infrequently purchase on the Internet report “extreme concerns” about
privacy online. 91.2% of Internet users are somewhat concerned or very
concerned about credit card security and shopping on the Internet."
From The UCLA Internet Report, October 2000 and Harris Poll, October

Are these the sort of statistics you are looking for?

Also, here's the Google search results page for 
"personal internet privacy statistics graphs charts":

One useful page I found here was the official Yahoo inrnet stats page:

Google Answers Researcher
There are no comments at this time.

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy