Aug 012009
 
 August 1, 2009  Posted by  Breaches, Business, Featured News, Non-U.S.

When even the purchase of a pack of cigarettes becomes part of an information database, the surveillance of people’s private lives by technological means has gone too far.

That statement is from an editorial in The Japan Times on how the Tobacco Institute of Japan handed over personal data and records of specific tobacco purchases to public prosecutors. The Taspo database was originally developed to help reduce the purchase of cigarettes by minors.

The editors conclude:

The purchase of tobacco, no matter how deleterious to one’s health, is still legal, and individuals should still maintain the ultimate control over their own personal data. One has to wonder whether the accumulation of data by businesses is for marketing research or for other purposes. When even the purchase of a pack of cigarettes becomes part of an information database, the surveillance of people’s private lives by technological means has gone too far.

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