Privacy in the Age of Surveillance Capitalism, with Nym's Claudia Diaz

February 13th, 2020 · 42 mins 40 secs

About this Episode

What is the role of privacy in the modern age, and how do we go about protecting it? How can new technologies help shield us from the rise of surveillance capitalism?

In this episode, host Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity) speaks with Claudia Diaz, Associate Professor and researcher at K.U. Leuven and Chief Scientist at Nym, an open-source, decentralized, permissionless protocol providing full-stack privacy infrastructure. We discuss the recent history of public perception on privacy, how to balance the trade offs between technology’s benefits and its use for mass surveillance, and how Nym is building infrastructure that protects our privacy rights by default.

01:24 - Claudia’s history
02:19 - 9/11 and the erosion of privacy
06:20 - Snowden’s impact in US vs EU
08:15 - Defining privacy and how to protect it
17:46 - Surveillance capitalism & opaque systems
21:11 - Balancing tech benefits and privacy
22:25 - How privacy technologies can help
24:03 - Transparency & information asymmetry
25:00 - Benefits of blockchain vs other technologies
27:29 - What Nym is building
39:50 - Anonymity vs privacy

Claudia Diaz @ K.U. Leuven
Nym on Twitter
Nym website
Nym on Telegram

Key Quotes:
“This idea of individual control—my data, I decide—while I understand it is compelling, I think it’s a bit limited. My view is I think we need to build systems in a way that we just don’t have this exposure by default.”

“I believe that information is power”

“I think privacy is very political intrinsically”

“One of the problems when you start talking about all the privacy threats is that you almost want to just disconnect yourself from the internet and throw away your phone….But that’s not the point. I don’t think we should be regressive and go back to some ideal past.”