Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

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germ
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Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by germ » Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:41 am

This has been widely reported last weekend. Example:
https://pjmedia.com/trending/whistleblo ... ine-sales/

I find it appalling that a bank (CitiBank in my case) would sell financial transactions data. I wonder if those privacy out-outs would prevent something like this.

How can we pressure MasterCard to stop this?

mhalley
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by mhalley » Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:59 am

I gave up on thinking anything I do is private a long time ago.

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JoMoney
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by JoMoney » Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:09 am

germ wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:41 am
...
How can we pressure MasterCard to stop this?
Stop using their product. Look for an alternate product that promises the privacy you're seeking.
Cash works very well.
"To achieve satisfactory investment results is easier than most people realize; to achieve superior results is harder than it looks." - Benjamin Graham

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oldcomputerguy
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by oldcomputerguy » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:50 am

germ wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:41 am
I find it appalling that a bank (CitiBank in my case) would sell financial transactions data.
The way I read this, the bank wasn't the culprit, it was the MasterCard network, which is not the same thing. Coming from the MasterCard network, the data would have encompassed cards backed by more banks than just Citi.
It’s taken me a lot of years, but I’ve come around to this: If you’re dumb, surround yourself with smart people. And if you’re smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you.

runner3081
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by runner3081 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:51 am

germ wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:41 am
How can we pressure MasterCard to stop this?
That is simple. Don't use a MasterCard logo card.

However, the word privacy today means something far different than it did 20 years ago. You would need to forfeit many modern conveniences to even TRY to protect whatever is left of your privacy.

I guess, to me, I don't care. Track me all you want, try to sell me things based on that tracking, etc. My life is boring, have nothing to hide and we don't buy much.

Have fun tracking companies :)

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unclescrooge
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by unclescrooge » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:16 am

germ wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:41 am
This has been widely reported last weekend. Example:
https://pjmedia.com/trending/whistleblo ... ine-sales/

I find it appalling that a bank (CitiBank in my case) would sell financial transactions data. I wonder if those privacy out-outs would prevent something like this.

How can we pressure MasterCard to stop this?
Your info is already being tracked

Everytime you buy something at a major retailer, the item sku, category, order total, location data is loved and gets sent to their advertising partner.

The advertising partner aggregate all your transactions across multiple retailers to create a composite profile and then sends you ads based on your interests.

Your online and offline data is already being shared. If you want to hide your offline purchases, then use cash and do not sign up for loyalty programs.

JeffAL
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by JeffAL » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:18 am

If you care about privacy in the slightest, use cash.

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bottlecap
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by bottlecap » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:29 am

If this is secret, how come you can find it on the internet?

Credit cards have also been doing this for years. See Google search engine.

The information is supposedly not personally identifiable, but geared toward permitting advertisers geographic purchasing data.

Google is an advertiser. Why should it be kept out of the loop?

You can be against this, but it’s not new.

JT

retiringwhen
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by retiringwhen » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:46 am

JeffAL wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:18 am
If you care about privacy in the slightest, use cash.
And don’t drive a car to the point of sale. Or walk on streets of any municipality over 100 People since your movements are closely tracked via multiple tools including RFID, camera, license plate readers ...

Definitely do not carry even a dumb Phone either.

Or send a letter or receive a package via USPS, UPS or Fedex.

Our every move is tracked everyday unless you live in desolate isolated country.

The good news is the retailers, google and government are not YET organized enough to truly cross relate the data streams. Things like this google MasterCard event shows they are trying.

carguyny
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by carguyny » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:56 am

I have my credit cards in Google pay already - gives me an alert of my phone when a transaction is posted. Great security when travelling etc. They also give my digital wallet a different card number than the physical card to protect my physical card further. Today I'm carrying 0 physical cards - in exchange for the security they get my transaction data, seems like a fair trade as I value my data at $0 but my time has value.

afan
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by afan » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:26 am

I find it impossible to get concerned about this. Of course credit card companies track customer spending. Of course advertisers track the effectiveness of ads. Of course merchants track spending and ads. Do you think Amazon does not track your purchases?

So what?

The only people who should be surprised are those who assumed, based on no facts, that these companies did not follow customer purchases. People who further insist that whatever they assume to be the case must be true. People who are outraged when they learn they are wrong.

Did Google promise not to do this? Did MasterCard? Did Amazon? What is there to get upset about?

According to the article Google has deals covering 70% of credit cards. Given the structure of the industry it is hard to see how this is possible without including Visa. So don't use Visa or MasterCard. Only use cards that will promise to ignore your purchase history, if you can find such.

Or don't worry about it.
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

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whodidntante
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by whodidntante » Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:27 am

I knowingly give up transaction information to sites like Ebates and RetailMeNot in exchange for money. I'm upset that Google didn't give me my cut.

retiringwhen
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by retiringwhen » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:14 am

whodidntante wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:27 am
I knowingly give up transaction information to sites like Ebates and RetailMeNot in exchange for money. I'm upset that Google didn't give me my cut.
I heard a pithy statement once. If you aren't paying for something, then YOU are the product.

eBates, etc. are all pretty honest and up front by paying you for your time and information.

The struggle for most people is that they have no idea that they are the product in these situations and they get nervous and excited once this bubble is burst.

I am neutral overall on the data collection. I try to evaluate three things whenever using a system that has a significant data collection component.

1.) how am I compensated? That can be cash back (credit cards, loyalty cards), attractive offers (Kohls coupons), or some value-added service (e.g. Google Maps, Samsung Pay, etc.)
2.) How is and can the information collected be reasonably used and I am "okay" with that usage?
3.) Does the service provider have an explicit data collection and usage policy that I can peruse and decide if its protections are sufficient?

Based on those three questions, I can make an informed decision to engage in a service that collects information.

These questions should be asked a LOT more often than folks may think necessary.

My examples earlier do not normally get considered by the casual user.

But, I have first hand experience with consequences of driving a car on a public road while engaged in a 100% legal activity. My car was photographed with license plate exposed and published on media sites by people who disagreed with my decision to engage in a legal activity and to expose the fact I did that on a public conveyance.

Similarly, carrying any cellphone (even turned off unless you have hacked the 911 reporting system) on your person will allow the phone to used to track your movements down to very small areas. Most people think turning off a few switches on their phone will make the invisible. Trust me, just having an RF transmitter in your pocket makes you a tracked object on the network.

Finally, the problem I am struggling with regarding MasterCard is the fact that none of this data collection is disclosed as far as I know through privacy agreements with card holders. My card agreements all focus on the issuing bank/institution's data collection and sharing policies.

afan
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by afan » Wed Sep 05, 2018 9:50 am

Tin foil will stop the cell phone tracking.

As far as Google and credit cards- I get lots of valuable services for free.

Credit cards are convenient and provide protection from theft that is far better than cash. They let me buy what I want, with no other hassles, often without any human interaction, day or night, anywhere. I get a record of each purchase and a float of nearly a month on the loan. I get the ability to challenge a charge when needed.

What does all this cost me? Exactly zero.

I am glad the industry works the way it does. If in return a credit card issuer wants to try to get ads through my adblocker in the hopes I will buy something, they are welcome to attempt it.

I get free internet searches from Google. Free maps. Free many other services. I pay nothing for this. If in return Google wants to try to serve me ads, be my guest.

I just hope those with a vague sense of outrage about what they "pay" for free services do not succeed in ruining the great deals we get.
We don't know how to beat the market on a risk-adjusted basis, and we don't know anyone that does know either | --Swedroe | We assume that markets are efficient, that prices are right | --Fama

BeerTooth
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by BeerTooth » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:03 am

retiringwhen wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:14 am
But, I have first hand experience with consequences of driving a car on a public road while engaged in a 100% legal activity. My car was photographed with license plate exposed and published on media sites by people who disagreed with my decision to engage in a legal activity and to expose the fact I did that on a public conveyance.

OK, I'm curious enough to ask: what was said legal activity?

adamthesmythe
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by adamthesmythe » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:32 am

To find out more, google "google mastercard deal."

The title should be "Google's formerly secret deal..."

Teague
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by Teague » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:36 am

BeerTooth wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:03 am
retiringwhen wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:14 am
But, I have first hand experience with consequences of driving a car on a public road while engaged in a 100% legal activity. My car was photographed with license plate exposed and published on media sites by people who disagreed with my decision to engage in a legal activity and to expose the fact I did that on a public conveyance.

OK, I'm curious enough to ask: what was said legal activity?
I'm presuming the publication on those media sites was also a legal activity? It your activity was interesting or potentially controversial, well, that's pretty much what media sites do.
Semper Augustus

retiringwhen
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by retiringwhen » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:43 am

BeerTooth wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:03 am
retiringwhen wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:14 am
But, I have first hand experience with consequences of driving a car on a public road while engaged in a 100% legal activity. My car was photographed with license plate exposed and published on media sites by people who disagreed with my decision to engage in a legal activity and to expose the fact I did that on a public conveyance.

OK, I'm curious enough to ask: what was said legal activity?
Divulging would violate the policies of this forum.

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Bogle7
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re: data collection of transactions

Post by Bogle7 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:58 am

I don't see the value -- for anyone -- to collect these data about me and my transactions.
What can they do with such data?

There are no ads on websites that I visit. But, I only visit about 50 each day.
I mute all commercials on TV. And, am watching more commercial-free shows. And, yes I do understand about product placement.
I throw out, without reading, all junk mail. If you sent me a check for $1M as pre-sort standard, I would not even see it.

retiringwhen
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by retiringwhen » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:03 am

Teague wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:36 am
I'm presuming the publication on those media sites was also a legal activity? It your activity was interesting or potentially controversial, well, that's pretty much what media sites do.
I did not pursue any detailed legal analysis but it appears that the data collector was not a journalist in a traditional sense, but they provided the photo to a "journalist" so the idea that the photographer was protected is unclear. This is a very muddy area of 1st amendment law if you start looking in any detail. Actually the definition of the Press and Journalist are pretty undefined these days and I think that is overall a very good thing, BTW. Just about anyone should be protected under 1st amendment protections for the press when engaged in activities related to the role of the press regardless of medium or professional designation.

But since I was on a public road (the photographer was clearly aware of the need for this to be true, and in fact he/she could have gotten a much more interesting photo when I was not on public road) makes any photo taken legal by anyone. For example you can legally have a photo taken of you walking down Broadway in NYC and get the image blown up and put on a side of the Times Square Jumbo Tron and you have no say about it. In fact they used to do that there for a neat/bizarre ad where you became part of the advertisement as you walked down the street. On the other hand, if they pointed the camera into the office across the street and displayed the image of you sitting at your desk, then the photographer could get in a heap of trouble.

Interestingly, In New Jersey, publication of someone's License Plate appears to have no legal limitations or protections for the car owner. This actually surprised me at the time (and was my main concern), as most newspapers and TV/video sites routinely block them out (probably more as a policy to reduce secondary hassles, than for legal reasons).

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greg24
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by greg24 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:09 am

The NSA has been tracking us more in-depth for years, and people have forgotten to be angry about that.

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Re: re: data collection of transactions

Post by retiringwhen » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:09 am

Bogle7 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:58 am
I don't see the value -- for anyone -- to collect these data about me and my transactions.
What can they do with such data?

There are no ads on websites that I visit. But, I only visit about 50 each day.
I mute all commercials on TV. And, am watching more commercial-free shows. And, yes I do understand about product placement.
I throw out, without reading, all junk mail. If you sent me a check for $1M as pre-sort standard, I would not even see it.
do you carefully shield your eyes from the sides of busses and billboards, not listen to radio, not shop in stores, don't read magazines?

The data is used to tailor your world already to a level that is unfathomable by most people.

Soon, the car next to you will start showing YOU tailored ads on the rear windows as your drive by. This is real and in testing. Digital Billboards along highways are already using crude versions of that to tailor when specific ads can be placed based on who is driving by during the day. Yes Google is one of the data sources for the in-feed data.

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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by mariezzz » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:26 am

People living in the EU have far better privacy protections than we have in the US.

It's not that we HAVE to accept the situation in the US, but rather, our legislators have failed to protect personal and financial privacy. For all those who have replied to the tune of "of course this is happening - why are you upset", what would your position be if Vanguard or Fidelity or TIAA (or other) started selling your personal financial information to Google (or other interested company)?

Although some have said "use cash", that won't work forever - in Europe, there are already businesses who won't accept cash. It is the best option currently in the US if you want to protect your privacy, given our current laws, but it increases your exposure to theft. One option would be something like carrying enough cash to cover purchases up to $100, then credit beyond that - you at least limit the information they can collect about you.

Another tip: shut off phones completely before you enter grocery or retail stores.

======
Regarding the issue in this thread of 'first hand experience with consequences of driving a car on a public road while engaged in a 100% legal activity' , the divulging of which is claimed to violate policies:

There are a lot of things which are not overtly prohibited which are pretty stupid to be doing while driving. Pictures of someone driving in a responsible manner are not likely to get published - they're too boring. The whole idea that we should require laws to prohibit people from texting or talking on the phone while driving is ridiculous to me - it should be obvious you should not do that. It really falls under more general laws about keeping your attention on the road while driving. However, it became such a problem that in recent years, many states have started passing explicit laws about this, precisely because too many people fail to think about the dangers of their actions. Too many people fail to consider how, by not paying attention to the task of driving, they can create very negative consequences for others, financially and/ or medically.

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Bogle7
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don't see much

Post by Bogle7 » Wed Sep 05, 2018 2:14 pm

retiringwhen wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:09 am
do you carefully shield your eyes from the sides of busses and billboards, not listen to radio, not shop in stores, don't read magazines?
1. Busses - don't see very many.
2. Billboards - tend not to look at them. Only drive about 2K miles per year.
3. Only listen to public radio. And, only listen to music. Change the station when I hear a voice.
4. Only shop in grocery stores. With a list. I don't think I have been inside a non-food store this year.
5. Rip all back-to-back adverts from magazines before reading them.

epoxyresin
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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by epoxyresin » Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:11 pm

retiringwhen wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:03 am
Teague wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:36 am
I'm presuming the publication on those media sites was also a legal activity? It your activity was interesting or potentially controversial, well, that's pretty much what media sites do.
I did not pursue any detailed legal analysis but it appears that the data collector was not a journalist in a traditional sense, but they provided the photo to a "journalist" so the idea that the photographer was protected is unclear. This is a very muddy area of 1st amendment law if you start looking in any detail. Actually the definition of the Press and Journalist are pretty undefined these days and I think that is overall a very good thing, BTW. Just about anyone should be protected under 1st amendment protections for the press when engaged in activities related to the role of the press regardless of medium or professional designation.

But since I was on a public road (the photographer was clearly aware of the need for this to be true, and in fact he/she could have gotten a much more interesting photo when I was not on public road) makes any photo taken legal by anyone. For example you can legally have a photo taken of you walking down Broadway in NYC and get the image blown up and put on a side of the Times Square Jumbo Tron and you have no say about it. In fact they used to do that there for a neat/bizarre ad where you became part of the advertisement as you walked down the street. On the other hand, if they pointed the camera into the office across the street and displayed the image of you sitting at your desk, then the photographer could get in a heap of trouble.

Interestingly, In New Jersey, publication of someone's License Plate appears to have no legal limitations or protections for the car owner. This actually surprised me at the time (and was my main concern), as most newspapers and TV/video sites routinely block them out (probably more as a policy to reduce secondary hassles, than for legal reasons).


You can still be legally photographed on non-public property, the standard's not if the property is public, but if you have a reasonable expectation of privacy. If you're mowing your front lawn or walking around in a mall you're fair game, if they have to climb a tree or use a telephoto you're more likely to be protected.

There really aren't many legal rights that a member of the "press" gets that anyone else doesn't. I guess some states have shield laws that purport to protect the press from having to divulge sources, which doesn't really seem to be an issue in your case. Anyone has a legal right to photograph you in a place where you don't have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and to report on it, whether they're members of the "press" or not.

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Re: Google's secret deal with MasterCard to buy all your CC transactions

Post by LadyGeek » Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:40 pm

This thread has run its course and is locked (general rant). See: Personal Consumer Issues
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