by John Detrixhe, Quartz
A lot can happen in a year. In 2018, the bitcoin bubble popped (again), tensions between the US and China boiled over into a trade war, and tech giants solidified their positions as the most valuable companies in the world (the top four in market cap are now Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and Alphabet).
Behind it all, in some way or another, was our private data.
This year, people started to realize that their data is hacked, exploited, and manipulated on an industrial scale, either by criminals or the tech companies that power the modern economy. Governments do it too, of course. Just this week, news emerged that hackers linked to China’s Ministry of State Security reportedly broke into the networks of Hewlett Packard Enterprise and IBM, and used that access to penetrate their clients’ systems.