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Data-Mining Your Privacy

Have you received a flood of offers for dog food and doggy deals! Your private information data-mined and sold to APHIS, zoning, or Animal Control?


June 12, 2020 update |

Barbara "BJ" Andrews, Editor-In-Chief


In 2014 we alerted subscribers to the secret but wide-spread practice of data-mining private and personal information. Even then, AKC was taking in fewer dollars (ii AKC 2013 revenue, pension, and retirement summary) from registrations, pedigree sales, dog show fees, AKC credit cards, etc. It was believed that the American Kennel Club was offsetting the shortfall by selling your personal information to companies that market pet supplies or consumer information, a practice known as data mining.


If you were shocked then, you'll be electrified to learn how business is done today!


Data-mining is big business on steroids. Judge Andrew Napolitano told Fox News that data brokers can legally harvest your email recipients and sell the list. You know the result as unwanted spam but there are other ways your private information is used. The Judge said privacy peddling is so bad that Europe passed legislation allowing users to “remove your footprint from the internet.” In 2020 we know that didn't work...


Data mining began when we were induced to give up private information in exchange for the grocery store “discount” received by presenting a keycard or member number at checkout. You unknowingly you sold your personal worth to save a few pennies.


What you buy, where you buy it, and your preference in wine, restaurants, shoes, edibles and entertainment is a valuable commodity. If it seems like a good tradeoff consider this…


If Animal Control, APHIS, or HSUS decides to inspect breeders in your area, they will have a list showing where you live and how many “dogs, cats and/or other small (mammals)” you own. Fines and/or fees can run in the thousands of dollars. Your animals can be confiscated and sold!


How did they find you? Odds are high that you unknowingly granted AKC, your veterinarian, groomer, dog food or pet supplies provider the right to sell your transaction records. observed in 2005 (before the APHIS rule) that AKC could subcontract breeder inspections. YOU are a marketable commodity. Like dog magazines buying lists from dog show superintendents, with far greater income and motivation, the Humane Society Of The U.S. or the USDA/APHIS can buy any list.


AKC’s database will even reveal whether or not the “puppy for sale” was born on your premises. Warning to “puppy back” co-owners - If you have five intact females included in that broad list of mammals you own (horse, cat, goat, the kid's pet rabbit), you are in violation of the APHIS rule and subject to inspection.


If you advertise a rabbit, hamster, etc., even in the local newspaper, you are even more likely to become part of a “universal” database. If you ship a puppy, kitten, ferret, etc. your information is automatically entered into the USDA database. APHIS can then access the database to compile an area-generated list of breeder-households to be inspected.


When your vet fills out a health certificate for the puppy (or frozen semen) you are shipping, you go in the federal database.


Is your financial transaction information shared with IRS? As a subscriber to TheDogPress, you know all about Internal Revenue Service Director Lois Lerner’s connection to HSUS.


Data mining is big business and the registries have all your personal informationData-mining your info became even easier in 2020.

Search engines know you by your IP address and your preferences are compiled in a limitless database. Surely you recall that first flush of vanity when Google “recognized” you and understood just what kind of information you were seeking? Amazon became tremendously successful at remembering exactly what items you viewed or last purchased and returning ads for similar items the next time you log in. You smile, grateful that it remembered your orders list…


Well, here’s a sobering thought.


According to a Wall Street Journal study, the top Internet sites install millions of data-laden cookies and personal tracking beacons onto personal computers. Search for information on “depression” for your great aunt and search engines may categorize you with emotional problems. Why? So it can sell that data to health-sites that will then target you with ads for antidepressants.


Airlines were among the first to collect, use, and sell your private information. In 1998 The Washington Post reported “The airline frequent-flier plan, an early example of this, has been around in electronic form for more than a decade. But data collection and matching are now done on a scale that lets companies – from groceries to hotels to all manner of firms on the World Wide Web – "anticipate what customers want before they ask for it."


If you think data-mining is not a deal, digest this fact: the ultra-conservative National Rifle Assoc. filed an amicus brief in support of the very liberal American Civil Liberties Union’s objection to the National Security Agency’s routine collection of tens of millions of telephone records. That was before Edward Snowden blew the lid off NSA’s collection of private data in an incontrovertible violation of the ii Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.


While government agencies usually require a search warrant, that Constitutional protection is evaporating even as you read this. Instant Information on ii Protecting Your Privacy. Explore the links below for more on data mining, your Constitutional Rights, and what NOT do if you are ever presented with a Search Warrant to search your home, kennel building, or premises.

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