Have you ever clicked on something on a platform like Facebook or Amazon and then been offered suggested links that are similar to what you just clicked? In a way it sounds pretty good as this can sometimes help you get more information about something you’re reading, or finding a complementary product, and so on.
However at the same time it seems that everytime you click on a suggested link, you could be giving away more of your privacy than you would like. This is according to a researcher at EPFL by the name of Mahsa Taziki who has developed an algorithm that can calculate how much information you are revealing about yourself whenever a link is clicked.
According to Taziki, “80% of the clicks provide a utility-privacy tradeoff for the users. Some clicks are very useful and don’t compromise your privacy, while others are just the opposite. My objective is to compute accurately the utility and privacy effects of the user’s clicks. The users can decide what to click on, and the service providers can also use it to improve the experience of their users.”
In a way you can think of this system as being similar to how browsers like Chrome will warn you when you’re about to visit a potentially dangerous website. The system is still being developed and there are plans to eventually turn it into an extension that can warn users when a website is being too liberal with their personal information.