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The Decline of Privacy on the Internet
Within national and international laws, privacy has had a long history. It is a value that is inevitably subjective, due largely to its varying importance among cultures.1 Nonetheless, there does exist three, more or less universal, aspects of privacy: freedom from intrusion, control of information about oneself, and freedom from surveillance,2 which have been pushed to the vanguard by the Internet. Economic theory endorses that the cost of acquiring information guides behavior. As a result, easily accessible databases increase the chance that people will search for information that they would not otherwise seek because the cost would have been too high. Because there is such a low cost for obtaining the information, people now acquire information neither pertinent nor reliable on which they make decisions.3 Private and public organizations that participate in global trade receive and communicate personal data on employees and customers with the hope that partnering organizations are invoking the same privacy principles, which are defined…