Six Lines

Acquisti on Why Privacy Matters

Posted by Aaron Massey on 22 Oct 2013.

Alessandro Acquisti recently gave a TED talk that is a must-watch for anyone wondering why privacy matters. He distills years of research into just 15 minutes and provides perspective on current and future challenges to privacy raised by information technologies.

If you’re interested in learning more about Dr. Acquisti’s work, I can recommend two papers as good starting points. First, What is Privacy Worth? is an economic analysis of the value people place on privacy. This paper is particularly valuable if you’re approaching privacy from a policy perspective. Second, Acquisti teamed up with several other researchers at Carnegie Mellon to study user regret in sharing information on Facebook. This research is extremely accessible, so don’t think you can’t just pick them up and read them if you are just starting to think deeply about the implications of information technology on privacy and autonomy.

In case you don’t see yourself reading long PDF, I can also recommend another presentation he gave at BlackHat in 2011: