Data is a set of values of qualitative or quantitative variables. Pieces of data are individual pieces of information. A huge range of organizations and institutions, businesses, governments and non-governmental organizations collects data.
Data is measured, collected and reported, and analyzed, whereupon it can be visualized using graphs, images or other analysis tools. Data as a general concept refers to the fact that some existing information or knowledge is represented or coded in some form suitable for better usage or processing. Raw data (“unprocessed data”) is a collection of numbers or characters before it has been “cleaned” and corrected by researchers. Raw data needs to be corrected to remove outliers or obvious instrument or data entry errors. Data processing commonly occurs by stages, and the “processed data” from one stage may be considered the “raw data” of the next stage. Field data is raw data that is collected in an uncontrolled environment. Experimental data is data that is generated within the context of a scientific investigation by observation and recording. Data has been described as the new oil of the digital economy.
YOU are full of data. You are not just a mass of atoms that passes through time and space but you are data.
We are data that defines your uniqueness to others, categorizing our history since birth.
As we go through life we share this data. Medical experiences, educational experiments, ancestry, employment and monetary accomplishments are all accumulated in various means and forms and filed away for accountants or librarians to maintain.
So is your data secured?
Paper files were lost in fires and misplacement and many were never converted to digital. The digital versions may not have been compatible with the latest database and purged.
Yet more and more we tend to put our data online for financing and purchasing and even personal information that was never spoken of before. A simple search on the web can find volumes about our data.
Firewalls to secure our precious data are no more useful than the locks on our doors. So many others know our data that sharing it is as easy a checking out a book at the library.
Hacking your data is no more threatening than going on a date. What is your sign?