A study by the Pew Research Center on the future of privacy sees the blurring of the boundaries between private and public information, with technology developers and policymakers struggling to respond to the changes.
The Pew Research Center conducted a survey among experts on whether the technology industry and politicians will be able to develop an infrastructure for privacy rights that fosters security and is widely accepted and trusted by 2025. The infrastructure should still allow for innovations in business and monetization while at the same time offering users with options on safeguarding their personal data.
The opinions of the 2,511 respondents were almost evenly split, with 55 percent not believing that such an infrastructure can be established within a decade and the remaining 45 percent believing that it is possible.
However, the clashing thoughts of the respondents on privacy's future are set aside as there is a wide agreement that life online is by nature a public one.
The survey conducted by Pew also revealed unified opinions on privacy and security being foundational issues of the online world and the problem of users being drawn by the promise of convenience to divulge supposedly private information.
Bob Briscoe, British Telecom networking and infrastructure chief researcher, thinks that complacency is the root of the lack of concern on privacy, as users are taught that by revealing their personal data, companies are able to make things more convenient for them.
John Wilbanks, Sage Bionetworks chief commons officer, thinks that 10 years is too short for lawmakers to adjust how they create regulations to be able to catch up to the high rate that technology is progressing.
According to Buzzmetrics business intelligence expert Nick Arnett, the definitions of "freedom" and "privacy" for society will change a lot come 2025, and that there will be constant disagreements as the definitions change.
University of Texas-Austin Digital Media Research Program director Homero Gil de Zuniga has a similar tone to his response, stating that in a decade, the things that are considered private now will not anymore be by then.
"Information will be even more pervasive, even more liquid, and portable. The digital private sphere, as well as the digital public sphere, will most likely completely overlap," de Zuniga said.
Peter Suber, the director of a project seeking for unlimited access to research, warns that there will be an arms race between the technology that promotes privacy and security, such as encryption, and technology that seeks to penetrate these safeguards, adding that the arms race has already started today.