Charla: Privacy Concerns: The Clash between Technological Capabilities and Societal Expectations

Ernst L. Leiss, Department of Computer Science, University of Houston
28 Septiembre, 2016 - 17:15
Grace Hopper 307 DCC, Piso 3, Edificio Poniente
Prof. José A. Pino

Society has certain basic expectations: People and institutions, including governmental  organizations, must behave in accordance with the law and in conformity with a society's ethics.  Moreover, a society's laws are generally expected to reflect its ethics. On the other hand,  technology increasingly provides capabilities that are unexpected and generally not well known. These technological capabilities may clash with a society's laws and ethics. In particular, modern societies have certain expectations of privacy; these expectations may be contradicted by the capabilities new technology provides.

In this talk, we examine a wide-ranging spectrum of computer-based technologies that may well be at variance with society's general privacy expectations. We look at statistical databases where queries should not be permit access to individual entries; at various technologies that permit the continual or intermittent monitoring of an individual's location; at monitoring communications, including problems created by the use of encryption; the use of watermarking to trace web content; and the sequencing of an individual's complete genome. In some cases, the technology intrudes on an individual's privacy, in some cases, its use may be viewed as neutral, and in some cases technology may be thought to go too far in protecting privacy.