Editorial: Privacy is precious and we should protect it

Everyone knows they ought to examine the small print of any contract they sign. Few actually do. We are especially cavalier about giving our consent for things we haven’t read in order to access services online. Nearly always there is a box somewhere on the website seeking confirmation that users have understood the terms and conditions. Usually, when we tick that box to say “yes”, we are lying.Does it matter? The answer depends on whether or not we care what happens to data about ourselves, our habits, our purchases, our preferences. The hidden price of most ostensibly “free” web services is some surrender of privacy. It is time the terms of that trade were more openly negotiated.

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