Big Data is a term used by the technologically inept in executive meetings to describe things they don't understand. According to Chief Information Officers with a bachelors degree in Music Theory, Big Data is "a field that treats of ways to analyze, systematically extract information from, or otherwise deal with data sets that are too large or complex to be dealt with by traditional data-processing application software." In English, this translates roughly to "I still don't understand why they hired me."
In practicality, Big Data is everything you do. Every social media post, every email, every line of chat, every purchase, every article you read, every search query you submit, every minute you spend looking at porn. Anything and everything you do is saved in a giant frozen warehouse, and that information is routinely wrangled by stat nerds with a basic understanding of Hadoop, so that they can serve you political ads based on how angry you are.
Humans have been hoarding data for a long time. Before the Internet, everything about you was stored in rooms of filing cabinets administered by one guy with a red stapler. This data was typically limited to things like birth, marriage, and death.
In the 60s, President Hoover invented the FBI, and they furthered the data collection to include the car you drive, the jobs you've worked, and whether or not you're a tree hugging hippy. Kennedy tried putting a stop to it and got shot in the head for his efforts.
After Bush knocked down the towers, the NSA began a surveillance program, expanding the data collection to include nudes and dick pics. At the time, dick pics were hard to find and obtained mostly by installing plants in Walgreens photo departments. Nowadays, they use a giant data vacuum inside of Facebook and acquire roughly 500 terabytes of dick per day.
Moving Big Data is no easy task. One attempt was started in the early 90s to move Big Data by FTP and it will finish just in time to see the sun go supernova. Nowadays, Data is moved in Big Trucks, proving once and for all that igloo dwelling faggot Ted Stevens was dead wrong about the Internet being a series of tubes.
Once the data has been moved, it needs to be read. There are a lot of methods for this, but it usually involves hiring someone who hasn't seen daylight in 26 years. Hadoop, Kafka, NoSQL, and the R programming language are some tools of the trade. Salesforce Analytics is also available for people who require giant buttons and meaningless pie charts.
Google: Stores 10 exabytes of big data. (1 exabyte = 1 million terabytes)
Facebook: Collects 500 terabytes of big data per day.
Amazon: Who the fuck knows.
I have no idea why it's so hard to get numbers on this but it probably has something to do with a fox and a hen-house.
Big Ways to Protect Yourself
Cancel your internet
Doing so will not only protect you, but will improve the internet overall.
Destroy your phone
This will also save you from many years of embarrassment and regret.
Cut off your utilities
They'll probably cut you off for non-payment soon enough anyway.
Cuss out your doctor
He's the reason Big Data knows about your microcock and sends you so much spam.