[PRESS RELEASE] Do We Really Own Our Data? | DigiTalk #30
Fri, 16 Aug 2019 || By Admin CfDS

Yogyakarta, August 15th, 2019 - Center for Digital Society (CfDS) held the 30th DigiTalk series with the theme of “Do We Really Own Our Data?”. More than 100 participants attended the event which took place at the Convention Hall of the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada. The session began with the screenplay of “The Great Hack", a documentary film from Netflix that tells the story of data theft in cyberspace. The film also discusses the Cambridge Analytica scandal that allegedly played an important role in Donald Trumps presidential campaign in the United States and also Brexit campaign in Britain. The next session was filled with the discussion on data protection and data science, presented by three speakers, namely Donny B. U. (Founder of ICT Watch), Anggoro Prasetya, and Krisostomus Nova Rahmanto from Sadasa Academy. The discussion was also moderated by Diah Angendari as the executive secretary of CfDS.

How Precious Our Social Media Data Is?

In the digital era, we are so familiar with social media. We use the platform to communicate, upload photos & videos, exchange information, and even to do promotion. Unconsciously, we are voluntarily giving our personal information to the general public.

In calculations and programming, there is what is called as an algorithm. Based on Anggoro’s explanation, there is a filter bubble algorithm -- it is an algorithm used to filter the habits of social media users from the form of likes, shares, comments, search history and others that are recorded on the digital platform. The information will later lead us to any kind of contents that are in accordance with our habits.

Kristo also revealed that there are at least two types of data that can be collected, namely structured and unstructured data. Structured data (in the form of text and numbers) has been used for a long time. As technology develops, there are new types of unstructured data, namely in the form of images and videos. That data is analysed by using machine learning and artificial intelligence technology, eventually to learn our data as a pattern. “People mine data because it can be analysed and used for market research. It's like the data business.” Kristo added.

The Importance of Having Awareness on Managing Personal Data

When we install an application, there is usually a request for permission from the application to access our data (such as name, location, camera, to audio.) According to Donny, it does not matter if we already know, allow, and do not mind about it. However, that can be a problem if we feel that the request itself is an invasion of privacy, and it can be very dangerous if the information is being misused. Maybe in e-commerce applications, our data will only be used as a target market that we usually enjoy, as it gives us our preferable promotions. But it becomes even more dangerous if our data is being used to commit criminal acts.

The data has become a necessity because it is needed. But awareness about the data protection itself, must start from ourselves. We can start from set the privacy policy features on digital platforms that we access such as Google or YouTube so that our information is not being misused. Then, we must also encourage the government to make a clear policy regarding the law on protecting personal data and privacy through social media. Personal data and privacy are human rights. But the problem is, we usually still act carelessly when it comes to our data privacy.” Donny said.

Author: Laili Rahmawati