Credit card transactions 'create a data shadow'

The rapid development of digital technology has meant that every "cashless transaction" is now recorded in databases for use by banks and advertisers, it has been observed.

Tech writer Mark Pesce suggested that every time a consumer spends on their credit card, it adds to a "data shadow" that steadily grows and follows them around.

Writing for, he noted that such data can then be exploited by banks to calculate the creditworthiness of customers, minute-by-minute, or by retailers aiming to make their advertisements more effective.

"For years we've been warned that with every database transaction, the place for ourselves, which allows us to exist unmolested and unconstrained, grows ever smaller," commented Mr Pesce. "Our opportunity to move, unseen and invisible, in the digital world, has become tiny."

Aussies looking for greater spending privacy and security may wish to compare credit cards and switch provider. Earlier this week, Pat Sheil of the Sydney Morning Herald spoke out against the use of recorded, automated calls by banks, noting that they confuse and alienate customers.

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