Privacy group gets NSA files on utility research

(Phys.org)—Files obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) and provided to CNET show that the National Security Agency (NSA) under its secret Perfect Citizen program is looking at the computerized systems ...

3G protocols come up short in privacy, say researchers

(Phys.org)—Researchers from the UK and Germany have found that 3G telephony systems pose a security weakness that results in threats to user privacy. The weakness makes it possible for stalkers to trace and identify subscribers. ...

Facebook privacy flaw nailed at Lugano workshop

(PhysOrg.com) -- As if Facebook has not has enough invasion-of-privacy problems, a pair of researchers have come up with one more reason why Facebook cannot rest. Shah Mahmood and Yvo Desmedt, Chair of Information Communication ...

Facebook answers privacy flap over leftover cookies

(PhysOrg.com) -- A Sunday blog post by self-described hacker, writer and entrepreneur Nik Cubrilovic has set off a firestorm of discussions and accusations that Facebook violates user privacy in the form of tracking via leftover ...

Congress weighs landmark change in Web ad privacy

(AP) -- The Web sites we visit, the online links we click, the search queries we conduct, the products we put in virtual shopping carts, the personal details we reveal on social networking pages - all of this can give companies ...

Why do humans prefer to mate in private?

Yitzchak Ben Mocha, an anthropologist with Zürich University, has conducted a study of human procreation habits as part of an effort to understand why humans prefer to mate in private. In his paper published in the journal ...

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Privacy

Privacy is the ability of an individual or group to seclude themselves or information about themselves and thereby reveal themselves selectively. The boundaries and content of what is considered private differ among cultures and individuals, but share basic common themes. Privacy is sometimes related to anonymity, the wish to remain unnoticed or unidentified in the public realm. When something is private to a person, it usually means there is something within them that is considered inherently special or personally sensitive. The degree to which private information is exposed therefore depends on how the public will receive this information, which differs between places and over time. Privacy can be seen as an aspect of security — one in which trade-offs between the interests of one group and another can become particularly clear.

The right against unsanctioned invasion of privacy by the government, corporations or individuals is part of many countries' privacy laws, and in some cases, constitutions. Almost all countries have laws which in some way limit privacy; an example of this would be law concerning taxation, which normally require the sharing of information about personal income or earnings. In some countries individual privacy may conflict with freedom of speech laws and some laws may require public disclosure of information which would be considered private in other countries and cultures.

Privacy may be voluntarily sacrificed, normally in exchange for perceived benefits and very often with specific dangers and losses, although this is a very strategic view of human relationships. Academics who are economists, evolutionary theorists, and research psychologists describe revealing privacy as a 'voluntary sacrifice', where sweepstakes or competitions are involved. In the business world, a person may give personal details (often for advertising purposes) in order to enter a gamble of winning a prize. Information which is voluntarily shared and is later stolen or misused can lead to identity theft.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA