Is your personal data ever really private?

CBS MoneyWatch

Americans can’t be blamed for questioning whether their digital data is ever entirely secure.

Yahoo (YHOO) on Wednesday disclosed a three-year-old security breach that compromised 1 billion user accounts. The same day, popular note-taking app Evernote changed its privacy policy, disclosing that engineers that oversee machine-learning programs may look at customer data to improve the service, causing a firestorm among its customers.

“Privacy and marketing are often are at polar odds with each other,” said Paul Calatayud, chief technology officer of Overland Park, Kansas-based FireMon. “It’s important as a consumer in general to understand the services that you’re taking advantage of and figure out what the monetization could be. For example, when Google came out with their version of Picasa, their initial licensing said any photo you uploaded became theirs.”