Before you have finished this paragraph, millions of kids will have shared their locations, interests or ideas without noticing it.
One idea came to my mind when I thought about writing a book: it should be useful to the reader. The biggest books I’ve read in my life were much more than an adventure, a drama or an emotional journey: they taught me something that could be applied to improve my life in any meaningful way.
Kids are the easiest target for companies who need data to survive. Unlike adults, girls and boys below 16 share their lives without putting much thinking into the process. Liking, sharing and comment other people’s life is something they do on a daily basis. Many times every day.
Tracing the behavior of a random man or woman was difficult until a few years ago. There were telephone records, credit card records and loyalty programs with cards attached to you keychain. But none of those methods were massive and, of course, weren’t functioning 24/7 non-stop.
An average kid with an average smartphone with the average apps is fully tracked. The life of a boy or girl is being recorded nowadays and simple algorithms at Instagram, Facebook, Youtube or TikTok can predict their online behavior with great accuracy.
And when you can predict a pattern you are just a few steps away from having the power to modify it.
Can we stop this from happening? We can’t. Well, yes, parents can isolate their kids at home and prevent them from using any device with an Internet connection. But that’s not scalable. It’s better to educate them on how to properly handle their digital profiles.
That’s one of the goals of ‘Rise of the Hackers’, but not the only one.
Learning the basics of coding, understanding the principles of logical thinking, stop being “programmed” by social media apps or being able to identify when a smartphone is being hacked, are also some of the knowledge packed inside the book.
Thousands of kids are already part of Mara Turing’s community. I hope you enter our world soon.