Suggestion: Category for the privacy of payment methods

I think electronic money transfering is quite a big source of leak of personal private information nowadays. And new threats are emerging (Apple, Google, Facebook etc. trying to enter the payments industry). My suggestion is a new category at

Some topics that could be included:

  • Major privacy problems related to payment services offered by Apple, Google etc.
  • Privacy problems of third-party, payment-only services like PayPal etc.
  • Privacy issues of credit cards, bank transfers etc.
  • Using CASH as the most private method of payment in one’s everyday life
  • Some information about cryptocurrencies. Privacy level of different cryptocurrencies and different wallet types. Buying and selling cryptocurrency. Storing cryptocurrency safely. Avoiding cryptocurrency scams, ponzi schemes etc.

s/trying to enter/have entered/

Otherwise yeah, I’d agree, it’s a good area to cover.

One thing you didn’t mention is loyalty programs, which is a big issue, because many people who pay with cash use a loyalty program at checkout --not realizing that it’s a largely unregulated space tying purchase history together. And a lot of that fed to data brokers.

It’s a very distinct – but complex issue – any author would struggle to structure in a way that can be iterated upon over time. Abstracting most of that complexity and presenting some clear choices will be hard, while yet having a way to click deeper into it.

Data brokers come & go all the time to evade privacy law. Many of them require state issued id to be submitted to them before they’ll do anything, which is insane, if you think you’ll be giving your most sensitive details to someone who will just close shop soon after. Then who knows what happens to that passport photocopy you gave out later…

IMO it’ll be a massive undertaking.


My mother is 30000% into all possible loyalty programs. When she sees “Get a chance to win….” or anything related to any eventual rebate you can be sure she will sign her life into that giving all her personal information (email, name, address, phone number etc.). Result : she is the only person I know which succeeded in filling her Gmail inbox ! I didn’t know there was a limit to it :rofl: (not using Gmail since more than a decade). I tried many times to educate her about sharing personal information etc. but she never understood why I make such a big deal of those type of things… different generations. I hope the young people of today growing up in a facecrap/intacrap/snapcrap world will become smart adults caring about personal information and privacy.


It’ll be a mix. Kids coming up today don’t understand the privacy issues any better than the generations before them. It’s not part of standard curriculum at all, it’s not part of intro programming classes, it’s not part of history classes (every US history class spends almost no time on the 4th amendment), et al.

It’s primarily the domain of lawyers right now, meaning, people who chose to go into law and specialize in digital rights/digital privacy. That’s essentially, mostly, what the EFF is: privacy/digital rights lawyers. Privacy is an ethics issue, and it’s really just not taught in any meaningful way in most computer science programs. It’s just not.

So schools keep churning out STEM graduates who are largely ignorant about the issue, even if they might be technically competent to understand it and help. Until that changes, privacy is Sisyphean work.