Prof Neil Lawrence discusses the ethics of personal data collection in the Guardian

Personal data about our lives is collected day-by-day, and even hour-by-hour or minute-by minute. Most of us are happy to gain the benefits that surrendering these data provides to us, whether it be discounts for our loyalty at a supermarket, personalised advertising based on our online shopping habits, or the ability to use for free the social networking tools that let us keep in close contact with our friends and colleagues.

However, is it possible to have something for nothing? People are becoming increasingly aware of the potential implications of making so much of our personal data available. In today's Guardian Professor Neil Lawrence discusses the personal data organisations are able to collect about us, and the ethical issues this raises.