What does your smartwatch really do with your data?

Smartwatch data utilization? Smartwatches are trending all over the world faster than the new variant of Covid-19. Being used by all age groups, it has become a fashion statement from kids to the elderly. While many brands are selling their products under the name of security, how do we know if our data is safe with them? Moreso, what do these companies do with the data as minute as our daily footstep count?

Also Read: What is Google Drive?

The wrist wearable market is categorized into 2 segments with products with limited capacity, on one hand, capturing data only about footstep count, sleep, blood pressure etc. And the other has features as advanced as replying to a WhatsApp message or paying your takeaway bill with just a swipe. The wearers of the former are much higher than that of the latter with every family member in a modern household keen on checking their health status.

If you are someone who wears a smartwatch or a Fitbit from waking up till going back to bed, you might want to reconsider wearing it at meetings you want to keep confidential or around conversation you certainly don’t want the tech giants to spy on. Or maybe while buying the $100 golf set you don’t want your wife to know about.

Companies as big as Google sells the data collected from your devices to various types of organisations be it Amazon (did you really think God was trying to help you buy the new stereo at slashed prices?), FMCG groups like Unilever or any other social media platforms like Instagram which knows exactly what your day is like to show you the most appropriate content.

Smartwatches/Fitbits or any other wrist wearables gather tons of data including where you were at what time and what method of payment you used to buy your groceries. Wearable technology security issues pertain to whatever the situation is.

While these are some of the concerns from the companies selling these products, there is a higher risk of your smartwatch being hacked by a common man, say while you pair it with your phone via Bluetooth. Another most common way of hacking a device is to use the data the accelerometer tracks from your daily movement and other fitness features that you may use. This data which is gathered to show you an analysis of your health and the potential health risks are often used to reveal passwords and information as sensitive as your credit card details.

 All this can be avoided by simply being aware of what the device asks you to agree on when first installed. So, the next time you skip the terms and conditions while signing up for a new wearable, remember god might not be watching you but it’s man may.

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