Despite feeling uneasy about sharing our data – 60 per cent of those surveyed recently by credit checking company Experian said they felt uncomfortable about giving out personal information — we still do it. Facebook, Google, Amazon and other companies hold details that we have willingly given up in return for a service — whether it be to “like” our friends’ pictures, search for cat-related video clips or buy the latest Jonathan Franzen novel.
In the face of recent data breaches, is worth handing it over? What’s the balance between giving up your data and what you get in return, and how can you shift that balance in your favor?
The value in your life; This reference to “Data” refers to more than your basic demographic such as Name, Address and maybe telephone number. Companies want details that will establish you as a commodity -- information they can harvest as a “data set” and then sold on to insurers or advertisers, for example. Information like your shopping habits or something as basic as your location. Anything about your personality that can be translated into data is worth something to someone – whether legitimately or otherwise.
People have become wise to companies asking for irrelevant details – for example, pet insurers asking for your marital status. At the moment, most of us give up this information for free, something EY, the professional services firm, believes will end in a few years’ time. EY thinks this golden age of “free-for-all access to customer data” is likely to decline by 2018. Matthew Heath, chairman of Lida, with the M&C Saatchi Group says, “As long as they get more relevance and tailored services in return, the data exchange is seen as fair.”
But how much is your data actually worth? Folks expectations run high. A recent survey revealed that most people expected to be paid at least $43 to give up their personal information. In the UK, Digital Catapult, a government-backed initiative to support the online economy, estimates the overall market could be worth up to $21 billion a year. But based on how the sector has been modelled they would likely value your information in pennies or fractions of a penny.
But while this return is very low, be assured that it is not the whole picture. You should not sell your data, but lease it. Time and time again.
“There is a critical difference between selling and licensing your data,” explains Nicholas Oliver, founder of Peaople.io, a data exchange. “A sale is giving something away in return for a payment or an exchange, and then you lose control. That’s a very scary and dangerous thing to do. Creating value and licensing that data – absolutely, people should definitely be able to do that.”
Read Article (Hugo Greenhalgh | ft.com | 11/06/2015)
Most of us are immersed in a complex, volatile soup of hyper-connected digital tech, where not only is the perception of time compressed, but privacy protections are being reshaped. Consumers are gaining knowledge of Personal Data’s value and knowledge is power.
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