Recognize that there is a moral issue
Have you ever noticed that when you are on the internet whether it is on your phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop, and more recently, the internet on your TV? Is there always a suggested items list? Sometimes on social media websites, there maybe is a list of people you may know and that you should add as a friend. When you are online, someone is always watching. Although you may feel like you are the only person who has access to your device or devices, the internet is collecting your data. You may find this data in your history. The history of your device(s) shows what you are viewing and what you have viewed. For instance, Ciara is on her government laptop and she is shopping on the BestBuy website for a tv, desktop, camera, and a PlayStation 5. Whenever Ciara goes on the BestBuy website at home from her laptop or phone she keeps recommendations on apps to download for her new tv, accessories for her desktop and camera and the latest games for the PlayStation 5. This is called consumer profiling.
Consumer Profiling in Everyday Use
Websites use consumer profiling to reach their target audience. When going on dicks sporting goods website, there will be numerous ways to convince the buyer (you) to stay on that website longer than what you originally anticipated. The ways of convincing could be pictures of famous athletes, athletes, and models wearing a nice outfit that goes with your style. There could also be videos that show the viewer, Tiger Woods wearing a Nike outfit and you may not be into golf, but everyone knows that Tiger Woods is one of the most influential and talented golfers ever and that could influence you to buy the same outfit you saw tiger woods wear and get some golf clubs so you can look nice golfing. A website is designed for a certain type of person in mind. If you are not into sports, it is very less likely you would not be on a sports website.
Consumer Profiling in a way is spying on people. Also, consumer profiling is not ethical. This does help the business help figure who their audience is and how to improve their audience experience. Companies collect information derived from several resources to build comprehensive profiles on individuals to sell products and to sell dossiers on behavior (Center, 2021)
Gather the relevant facts.
People are not too focused that a site that they use regularly, stores commonly used information. Consumer profiling offers additional insight into customers and helps to identify and gain a deeper understanding of the target market (Team, 20) This issue helps the business and helps the customer. The customer will get a feeling like the company knows them and what type of clothes (sometimes remembers sizes), shoes, devices, books, etc. a person likes and will keep them wanting to continue to shop there.
Test for right-versus-wrong issues
Some may argue that no one should access what we view, how much we have viewed, and keep a record of our searches. Once you search for something and delete the history, it may be gone from your site, but it is saved on the memory of the device. There is no harm in keeping data such as what website you have used. For the legal test, consumer profiling does not violate safety and health regulations. If this was a topic on the front page of the “New York Times” or “The Washington Post”, most people would not care since no personal information is being leaked out by these companies such as payment information, full name or, addresses.