Did you use your credit card this weekend? Go to the mall, or buy a few things online? Well, data researchers at MIT have some news for you.
In a study just published in the journal Science, they found that by looking at a huge anonymized list of credit card transactions, they could figure out that the person who bought that latte at Starbucks is the same person who bought that snow shovel at Walgreens and that pair of pants at the Gap.
Here & Now's Jeremy Hobson talks to MIT Professor Sandy Pentland, one of the principal investigators on the study, about what the study found, and its implications.
- Read the study in Science: Credit card study blows holes in anonymity
- New York Times: With a Few Bits of Data, Researchers Identify ‘Anonymous’ People
This segment aired on February 2, 2015.