Online Privacy Issues in the Age of Exposure

10.05.2017, 16:00 – 17:00

10.05.2017 16:00-17:00

Speaker: Esma Aïmeur, University of Montreal

Organizer: GRK Privacy & Trust


Nowadays data generates value to individuals, organisations, and society. Websites and Internet services are collecting personal data with explicit or implicit consent of users. Not only does new technology readily provide an abundance of methods for organizations to gather and store information, people are also willingly sharing data with increasing frequency, often exposing their intimate lives on social media websites.

Online data brokers, search engines, data aggregators, geolocation services and many other actors on the web are monetizing our online presence for their own benefits. Similarly, current technologies including digital devices such as smartphones, tablets, cloud computing/SaaS, and IoT are posing serious concerns for individuals. In addition, Privacy Enhanced Technologies are not sufficient to protect them.

In this talk, I propose to address various issues inherent to Internet data collection and disclosure behavior in online social media. More precisely, I examine the social, economic and legal dimensions of personal data and privacy. I will show that preserving privacy is not an easy feat nowadays: technology is advancing too fast, legislation is far behind and security awareness is insufficient.

Short Bio

Esma Aïmeur is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Operations Research at the University of Montreal. She received her Ph.D. Degree from University of Paris 6 in the field of Artificial Intelligence. She was the head of the Computer Science division as part of the multidisciplinary Masters Program in Electronic Commerce at the University of Montreal.

She has been working with her team on computer privacy for more than 15 years. She is interested in privacy-enhancing technologies in different settings, such as social networks, electronic commerce and e-learning. She also works on privacy-preserving data mining and the protection of personal data (identity theft, information disclosure, profiling and re-identification).

She has been appointed member of the Data Protection Advisory Committee of University of Montreal. Her responsibilities are to help improve policies and decision making in security awareness by providing best practices to protect personal data.