Privacy, Security, and Wearable Technology

Janice Phaik Lin Goh

©2015. Published in Landslide, Vol. 8, No. 2, November/December 2015, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.

Not so long ago, a polo shirt was made of cotton, synthetic wool, and maybe silk. Today, a polo shirt can come equipped with bio-sensing silver fibers that can track the number of calories you burn and your heart rate, and stream this real-time biometric data directly to your phone.1 In today’s world of wearable devices, our day-to-day apparel and accessories are turning into networked mobile electronic devices that attach to our body. The market is now flooded with wearable devices that include wristbands such as Fitbit2 and Jawbone,3 attachable baby monitors such as Mimo4 and Sproutling,5 watches such as the Apple Watch, and jewelry such as Cuff6 and Ringly.7 The wearable market is rapidly growing; according to the International Data Corporation (IDC), shipments of wearables will reach up to 45.7 units in 2015, a 133.4 percent increase from 2014.8 Morgan Stanley has predicted that the wearables market will eventually become a $1.6 trillion business.9

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