New Computer Chip: Useful Tool or Privacy Invasion? Intel's Use of an Identification Number in Its Newest Chip Is Causingprivacy Advocates to Cringe

By Paul Van Slambrouck, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, February 16, 1999 | Go to article overview

New Computer Chip: Useful Tool or Privacy Invasion? Intel's Use of an Identification Number in Its Newest Chip Is Causingprivacy Advocates to Cringe


Paul Van Slambrouck, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


A new generation of computer chip will be unveiled this week, bringing nifty new audio and video functions to the screens of America's expanding universe of Internet users.

It will also bring a giant collision of values that are increasingly at war as the nation's newest form of communication moves into the social mainstream.

Intel Corp., whose microprocessors power most of the nation's personal computers, is embedding for the first time an identification number in its newest chip. While the chip promises to enable lots of new multimedia functions for Internet users, its identification feature gives computers a sort of fingerprint that Intel says adds security to online activities, whether making an online purchase or transferring sensitive personal data from one computer to another. But that identification feature also has the makings of a vast tracking system that could help accumulate data on users as they travel around the Web, violating their fundamental right to privacy, say critics. So outraged are some privacy advocates that they've launched a boycott of products containing the new Intel Pentium III chip, the first such broad-based boycott of a product over the privacy issue. Just as the ongoing antitrust suit against Microsoft Corp. is grappling with how to apply age-old rules of fair competition to the Information Age, the Intel controversy represents a benchmark in the struggle to apply traditional notions of privacy and security to that same information revolution. Drawing a historic parallel, computer science professor Lance Hoffman of George Washington University says traveling the Internet has been like the early days of the automobile, when people were unencumbered by the requirements of a drivers license, license plates, or traffic rules. Yet developing new procedures for expanding uses of the Internet, Mr. Hoffman says, is far more sensitive than anything encountered in Henry Ford's era. That's because one of the primary functions of the Internet is communication, which is by its very nature personal. And while the issue once concerned a relatively small group, that is no longer the case. "We're seeing the privacy concerns of cyberspace change from something that affected a relatively small number of people to the general public," adds Hoffman, director of the university's Cyberspace Policy Institute. Spearheading the boycott drive is the Washington-based advocacy group Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC). "A lot of people feel they're being forced to make a trade they don't want to make," says EPIC's Marc Rotenberg. The message to Internet users from Intel is "enjoy the benefits of Web-based services, but the admission ticket is your privacy," he says. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

New Computer Chip: Useful Tool or Privacy Invasion? Intel's Use of an Identification Number in Its Newest Chip Is Causingprivacy Advocates to Cringe
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.