This week, we learned about data trails and digital breadcrumbs. What does this mean? Well, for starters, the access you give to corporations every time you agree to the “terms and conditions” of an application entails them to every bit of information you post, from facebook statuses, to google searches, to online shopping preferences. In the digital age, every action we do online leaves a breadcrumb of data that can be collected by the likes of retailers, banks and various other organisations (Pod Academy, 2016, pp. 10).
I can’t help but consider the way we so willingly agree to give access to our most personal and private information online. Most apps have options of turning on location services, which can track where a user is in real time due to the censors on their personal smartphone. These sensors extend further to sound, as we give application access to our audio as well. The Pod Academy (2016) elaborates upon this process, stating the following:
“Basically, when you have a phone, you have a series of censors and you have this constant background communication between the phone and the cell towers, but also if its connected online between the phone and the internet so there are all these apps that are getting information about your phone, about your environment.” (pp.13)
In my own personal experience of being made aware of the sensory tracking that was occurring within my smartphone, I remember how I was talking with a friend once who was telling me about getting a new job at a local Cafe. We discussed this event in person, and not once did I physically engage with my phone during the conversation. Following the encounter with my friend, I recall using Instagram when an ad for the same cafe came up on my feed.