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Who Owns Your Web Data?

The Internet is driving awareness of a problem that is not new. While most Web users feel that their surfing habits are personal and belong to them, they must remember that when they enter a Web site, there are terms and conditions of use. Packet tracking, used by sophisticated software to develop real-time user profiles for personalization, product presentation, and special promotions, is a rapidly growing technique used by most large e-tailers to maximize sales and ROI. While physical stores may be anonymous, the digital engine of an e-commerce site lends itself to a much higher degree of customer shopping analysis. Most sites have no reason to share this data, and to the contrary should protect as a prized asset.

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