If there is one thing you need to remember at all times in the Electronic Age, it is that?privacy no longer exists. Every electronic device, every electronic communication, every electronicanything?betrays your sense of privacy in every imaginable way, and that is also true of a seemingly innocuous item ? the photo.
J.D Heyes/Natural News
If taken with a smartphone ? as many photos these days certainly are ? then the government, as well as ordinary folk (including those who mean you harm) can use metadata embedded in that photo you just tweeted or posted on?Facebook?to find out your exact coordinates. That includes where you live, if that?s where you sent or posted the photo from, according to a new investigative report by?McClatchy Newspapers:
The GPS location information embedded in a digital photo is an example of so-called metadata, a once-obscure technical term that?s become one of Washington?s hottest new buzzwords.
The word first sprang from the lips of pundits and politicians earlier this month, after reports disclosed that the government has been secretly accessing the telephone metadata of Verizon customers, as well as online videos, emails, photos and other data collected by nine Internet companies.
In the wake of revelations that the NSA has been collecting all of that metadata, President Obama has sought to assure us that ?nobody is listening to your phone calls.? Other government officials compared the collection of such data to ? no kidding ? ?reading?information?on the outside of an envelope, which doesn?t require a warrant,? McClatchy reported.
Sure. But privacy experts say these are not reassurances at all. They say that anyone who knows how to mine?metadata?understand it can reveal so much more about us and how we live our daily lives than other forms of communication.
Metadata is, essentially, all your information
What is metadata, exactly? McClatchy explains:
Simply put, it?s data about data. An early example is the Dewey Decimal System card catalogs that libraries use to organize books by title, author, genre and other information. In the digital age, metadata is coded into our electronic transmissions.
?Metadata is information about what communications you send and receive, who you talk to, where you are when you talk to them, the lengths of your conversations, what kind of device you were using and potentially other information, like the subject line of your emails,? Peter Eckersley, the director of technology projects at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital civil liberties group, told the newspaper group.
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