DIGITAL CONVENIENCE COMES WITH A PRICE

With the world becoming increasingly digital, privacy issues have gained utmost significance as the challenges of dealing with new security breaches have increased. We know that on September 9th, 2021 Facebook Inc. introduced what they call as “true augmented reality spectacles” in partnership with Essilor Luxottica; a multi-national corporation based in Paris reputed for making Ray-Ban glasses at a price beginning from $299. Facebook’s guarantee of handling user data responsibly and of not accessing the media files without the smart glasses customer’s consent is valid until cyber criminals find a way to hack it.

Facebook claims that the LED light on the smart glasses warn people if they are recorded, and that the security features assures user safety as it seeks the users’ permission to share any content stored. Users have the tendency to take photos of people without asking their permission and the latter fail to object when they are being recorded. This tendency, which is a public privacy issue, informs organisations or corporations about the need to educate people on new technology which would instruct them about their right to object explicitly.

European Union’s Central Data Protection Regulation places strict rules on anyone capturing data using products like CCTV cameras, Facebook’s Stories glasses such as making their actions known to people, the usage of that data, and who they are intending to share with etc. Augmented Reality’s capacity to duplicate images in virtual spaces causes Intellectual Property infringement which poses legal challenges and causes disputes related to content ownership and IP theft.

According to the Australian Privacy Principles 11, An APP entity must take reasonable steps to protect personal information it holds from misuse, interference and loss, as well as unauthorized access, modification or disclosure.”  As far as personal information held by organizations is concerned, 11.28 “Where an organization ‘holds’ personal information it no longer needs for a purpose that is permitted under the APPs, it must ensure that it takes reasonable steps to destroy or deidentify the personal information. This obligation applies even where the organization does not physically possess the personal information but has the right or power to deal with it. The fact that Facebook Inc. holds the personal information of users itself will lead to breach of privacy laws if security breaches occur. Although this is the case with most businesses, digital convenience comes with a price!

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