11 January 2011

Hunted on Facebook, drafted by the Israeli Defense Forces

Soldiers and the priest_1937cphoto © 2007 James Emery | more info (via: Wylio)

I am always curious to read news and articles related to social media networks and privacy. The last one I got aware of deals with Israeli women’s attempts to escape their duty to join the  military service alleging some religious reasons.

However, the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) did not accept those allegations with just a good faith. Moreover, the IDF officers sought for applicants’ profiles on Facebook that possibly showed them being not that devoted to God. Reportedly, they were successful.

For me this incident is important for two reasons. First, it represents just another alert to all users of social media networks that ignore the consequences of sharing personal data with the world at large. Second, it comes at the same time with the EU Commission’s decision to declare Israel “an adequate” country in terms of data protection. Not that such an incident could not have happened under the jurisdiction of an EU member state, but the coincidence is somewhat symptomatic.

Now, what is the moral of the story? Once again, beware of what you share with others and do neither underestimate nor neglect the consequences. Last but not least, do not blindly trust in Commission’s choices as to a state of data protection adequacy.


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