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Who Knows: Safeguarding Your Privacy in a Networked World Hardcover – 1997

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

This is a scary but very necessary look at how "privacy" is fast becoming a quaint notion in today's wired world. Medical records, credit reports, employment records and communications -- a huge amount of information is profiled and stored online, very detailed, and often for sale. Everyday actions such as buying a car, purchasing groceries, ordering a pizza for delivery all seem innocuous, but information is collected about our preferences and habits in places that we don't usually consider. The authors show how information is collected and maintained and then offer strategies and ideas for keeping the promise of technology from becoming a nightmare.

Their ideas won't stop the invasion of privacy in its tracks, but they will slow it down considerably. More important is the idea that we don't have to passively accept these intrusions into our lives.


"Ever wonder shy the department-store clerk has to know your Social Security number? In a "point-and-click" world where personal information flows freely, Ann Cavoukian and Don Tapscott say you can't be too careful." -- Cunutte, Mark, Cincinnati Enquirer, 2/21/97

"There is every reason to fear both current and potential invations of privacy by new computer technology. No other recent book explains the many issues concerning privacy and technology as straightforwardly and comprehensively as Ann Cavoukian and Don Tapscott's /IWho Knows: Safeguarding Your Privacy in Networked World/N" -- Jones, Don, The Wahington Times, 1/26/97

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 233 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill (1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0070633207
  • ISBN-13: 978-0070633209
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,023,017 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
I was disappointed not so much by what I found, but rather by what is missing. After finishing the book I still wanted to know what the precise data enities are that may typically be considered candidates for privacy treatment. This is a key piece of information that was completely missing from the book.
So I went to the web site managed by Dr. Cavoukian, The Ontario Privacy Commissioner to ask about where I might obtain such information. Amazingly, I could not send her, the Ontario Privacy Comissioner an e-mail. <P A quote from Dr. Cavoukian's Ontario Privacy Commissoner site reads "It is an unfortunate reality of the present Internet that communications carried over it are neither secure nor verifiable. We look forward to the day when this is not the case. However, at the present time, to ensure that there is no confusion over your communication with the Commissioner, we ask that you use one of the methods listed above to make your enquires." The above methods to chose from were mail, fax, or phone. Obviously, mail, phone and fax are equally at risk if not more so, and not all information has to be of a confidential nature. It is hard to take this person seriously since she clearly lacks a fundamental grasp of the technology she is tasked to protect.
I do not recommend the book.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an incredible book that deals with the increasingly complicated problem of privacy in an increasingly technologically based society. This book reveals the secrets behind such things as "preferred shoppers cards" and direct marketing. If you care about your privacy, this book is a must-read.
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