Publication | ThinkSet

How Outdated Data Privacy Laws Might Affect You—and Your Data

David Kalat

October 17, 2019

After 180 days, your data can be accessed by authorities without a warrant, thanks to a 1980s law.

In August 1985, Creative Computing magazine gushed over a new “bargain price” hard-disk drive that had just hit the market.

“That’s right,” the reviewer noted. “First Class Peripherals offers the Sider, a hard disk drive with 10 MB partitionable among four operating systems for $695.”

By the end of 2019, the average flash memory capacity for smartphones is expected to reach 83 GB, up from an average of 43 GB at the end of 2017. The average smartphone user carries around a device with more than 8,000 times the storage capacity of what a high-end computer user would have been delighted to buy in 1985.

Today’s digital citizens need not live with the limitations of 1980s computer technology. However, they must live with the limitations of 1980s computer laws.

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David Kalat



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