In a world of smart phones and smart cars, the Internet is no longer limited to your desktop; it follows you wherever you go. And as long as you are online, you could potentially be tracked at all times. While all eyes are on the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of data, a thriving economy built on mass consumer surveillance is growing. Companies are collecting information about consumers in order to sell ads more effectively.
Some of the most commonly visited sites use tracking cookies and sophisticated software through third parties to collect information about consumers and sell it to advertisers, often times without the consumer’s permission. New technologies and a heightened level of sharing on multiple outlets have led to moral and practical dilemmas that confront consumers, the tech industry, retailers, even the government.