A graphic display of what Google knows

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    A graphic display of what Google knows

    Every wonder how much information Google has  gathered? Scott Cleland, publisher of the Website GoogleMonitor.com, has pulled together a snappy one-page graphic, “Google’s ‘Total Information Awareness’ Power,” that answers the question.

    The term “Total Information Awareness” comes from Admiral John Poindexter, who in the wake of the 9-11 terror attack, proposed U.S. intelligence agencies use all available surveillance and information technology to track terrorists.  Concerns were raised that the program would become a mass surveillance system that would invade Americans’ privacy without due process. Congress scrapped it in 2003.

    Cleland’s suggestion is that Google amasses data on the scale of the “Total Information Awareness” program.

    Cleland says he pulled the graphic togeher to “to help you picture both the enormity and unprecedented power of what Google knows about you and the world’s information—public, private and proprietary.”

    He writes:

    In sum, at present there are minimal checks and balances, oversight, or accountability for Google’s unprecedented and unmatched permission-less profiling power and information market power.

    If this chart does not trouble you, at least some, you are forgetting the old adage and repetitive lessons of history — that unconstrained power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    I encourage you to download the PDF and have a close look for yourself.


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