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The Personal Data Eco-system

Post from 2009 reposted here to facilitate further discussion.

At the VRM workshop, we discussed the need for the concept of the Personal Data Store, what it would do in practice, and what that will ultimately enable.

Why we need such things – because individuals have a complex need to manage personal information over a lifetime, and the tools they have at their disposal today to do so are inadequate. Existing tools include the brain (which is good but does not have enough RAM, onboard storage, or an ethernet socket……thankfully), stand alone data stores (paper, spreadsheets, phones, which are good but not connected in secure ways that enable user-driven data aggregation and sharing), and supplier based data stores (which can be tactically good but are run under the supplier provided terms and conditions). NB Our current perception of ‘personal data stores’ is shaped by the good ones that are out their (e.g. my online bank, my online health vault); what we need is all of that functionality, and more – but working FOR ME.

What they will do/ enable – the term Personal Data Store is not an ideal term to describe a complex set of functions, but it is what it is until we get a better one (the analogy I’d use in more ways than one is the term ‘data warehouse’ – again a simplistic term that masks a lot of complex activity). A Personal Data Store can take two basic forms:

Operational Data Stores – that get things done, and only need store sufficient breadth and depth of data to fulfill the operation they are built for (e.g. pay a credit card bill, book a doctor’s appointment, order my groceries).

Analytical Data Stores – that underpin and enable decision making, and which typically need a more tightly defined, but much deeper data-set that includes data from a range of aspects of life rather than just that from one specific operation (e.g. plan a home move, buy a car, organise an overseas trip).

A sub-set of the individual’s overall data requirement will lie in both of the above, this being the data that then integrates decision-making and doing.

In both cases, the functionality required is to source, gather, manage, enhance and selectively disclose data (to presentation layers, interfaces or applications).

We also discussed ‘who has what data on you’ and introduced the following diagrams to explain current state and target state (post deployment of Volunteered Personal Information (VPI) tech and standards).

The key terms that require explanation are:

My Data – is the data that is undeniably within, and only within, the  domain of an individual. It’s defining characteristic is that it has demonstrably not been made available to any other party under a signed, binding agreement. This space has been increasingly encroached upon by technology and organisations in recent history (e.g. behavioural tracking tools like Phorm) and this encroachment will continue. Indeed a general comment can be made that ‘my data’ equates to privacy in the context of personal data; so the rise of the surveillance society and state is a direct assault on ‘My Data’. Management of ‘My Data’ can be run by the individual themselves, or outsourced to a ‘fourth party service’.

Your Data – is the data that is undeniably within the domain of an organisation; either private, public or third sector. Proxy views of this data may exist elsewhere but are only that. This data would include, for example, the organisations own master records of their product/ service range, their pricing, their costs, their sales outlets and channels. Customer-facing views of much of Your Data is made available for reproduction in the ‘Our Data’ intersect.

Our Data – is the data that is jointly accessible to both buyer and seller/ service provider, and also potentially to any other parties to an interaction, transaction or relationship. It is the data that is generated through engaging in interactions and transactions in and around a customer/ supplier relationship. Despite being ‘our’ data, it is probably technically owned, or at least provided under terms of service designed by the seller/ service provider; in practical terms this also means that the seller/ service provider dictates the formats in which this data exists/ is made available.

Their Data – is the data built/ owned/ sold by third party data aggregators, e.g. credit bureaux, marketing data providers in all their forms. It’s defining characteristic is that it is only available/ accessible by buying/ licensing it from the owner.

Everybody’s Data – is the public domain data, typically developed/ run by large, public sector(ish) entities including local government (electoral roll), Post Offices (postal address files), mapping bureau (GIS). Typically this data is accessible under contract, but the barriers to accessing these contracts are set low – although often not low enough that an individual can engage with them easily.

The Basic Identifier Set/ Bit in the Middle – this is the core personal identity data which, like it or not, exists largely in the public domain – most typically (but not exclusively) as a result of electoral rolls being made available publicly, and specifically to service providers who wish to build things from them. This characteristic is that which enables the whole personal eco-system and its impact on data privacy to exist, with the individual as the un-knowing ‘point of integration’ for data about them.

Propeller Current State

The ovals in the venn diagram represent the static state, i.e. where does data live at a point in time. The flow arrows show where data flows to and from in this eco-system; I use red to signify data flowing under terms and conditions NOT controlled by the individual data subject.

Flow 1 (My Data to Your Data, and My Data to Our Data) – Individuals provide data to organisations under terms and conditions set by the organisation, the individual being offered a ‘take it or leave it’ set of options. Some granularity is often offered around choices for onward data sharing and use, i.e. the ‘tick boxes’ we all know and which are one of the main bitsof legacy CRM that VRM will fix.

Flow 2 (Your Data to Your Data, including Our Data) – Organisations share data with other organisations, usually through a back-channel, i.e. the details of the sharing relationship are typically not known to the data subject.

Flow 3 (Your Data, including Our Data to Their Data) – Organisations share data with a specific type of other organisation, data aggregators, under terms and conditions that enable onward sale. Typically the sharer is paid for this data/ has a stake in the re-sale value.

Flow 4 (Everybody’s Data to Their Data) – Data Aggregators use public domain data sources to initiate and extend their commercial data assets.

The target state is shown below, a different scenario altogether – and one which I believe will unfold incrementally over the next ten years or so…..data attribute by data attribute, customer/ supplier management process by customer/ supplier management process, industry sector by industry sector. In this scenario, the individual and ‘My Data’ becomes the dominant source of many valuable data types (e.g. buying intentions, verified changes of circumstance), and in doing so eliminates vast amounts of guesswork and waste from existing customer/ citizen managment processes.

The key new capabilities required to enable this to happen are those being worked on in the User Driven and Volunteered Personal Information work groups at Kantara (one tech group, one policy/ commerce one), and elsewhere within and around Project VRM. The new capabilities will consist of:

– personal data store(s), both operational and analytical

– data and technical standards around the sharing of volunteered personal information

– volunteered personal information sharing agreements (i.e. contracts driven by the individual perspective, creative commons-like icons for VPI sharing scenarios)

– audit and compliance mechanics

Around those capabilities, we will need to build a compelling story that clearly articulates, in a shared lexicon (thanks to Craig Burton for reminding us of the importance of this – watch this space), the benefits of the approach – for both individuals and organisations.

The target state that will emerge once these capabilities begin to impact will include the 4 additional individual-driven information flowsover and above the current ones. The defining characteristic of these new flows is that the can only be initiated by the data subject themselves, and most will only occur when the receiving entity has ’signed’ the terms and conditions asserted by the individual/ data subject. The new flows are:

Flow 5 (My Data to Your Data (inc Our Data) – Individuals will share more high value, volunteered information with their existing and potential suppliers, eliminating guesswork and waste from many customer management processes. In turn, organisations will share their own expertise/ data with individuals, adding value to the relationship.

Flow 6 (Everybody’s Data to My Data) – With their new, more sophisticated personal information management tools, individuals will be able to take direct feeds from public domain sources for use on their own mashups and applications (e.g. crime maps covering where I live/ travel)

Flow 7 (My Data to (someone else’s) My Data) – An enhanced version of ‘peer to peer’ information sharing.

Flow 8 (My Data to Their Data) – The (currently) unlikely concept of the individual making their volunteered information available to/ through the data aggregators. Indeed we are already starting to see the plumbing for this new flow being put in place with the launch of the Acxiom Identity Card.

Propeller Target State

The implications of the above are enormous, my projection being that over time some 80% of customer management processes will be driven from ‘My Data’. I’m pretty confident about that, a) because we are already see-ing the beginning of the change in the current rush for ‘user generated content’ (VPI without the contract), and b) because the economics will stack up. Organisation need data to run their operations – they don’t really mind where it comes from. So, if a new source emerges that is richer, deeper, more accurate, less toxic – and all at lower cost than existing sources; then organisations will use this source.

It won’t happen overnight obviously; as mentioned above specific tools, processes and commercial approaches need to emerge before this information begins to flow – and even then the shift will be slow but steady, probably beginning with Buying Intention data as it is the most obvious entry point with enough impact to trigger the change. That said, the Mydex social enterprise already has a working proof of concept up and running showing much of the above working. A technical write up of the proof of concept build can be found here. And the market implications of this are explored in more detail in new research on the market value of VPI shortly to be published by Alan Mitchell at Ctrl-Shift.

The two hour session at the VRM workshop was barely enough to scratch the surface of the above issues, so the plan is to continue the dialogue and begin specifying the capabilities required in detail in the User Driven and Volunteered Personal Information (technology) workgroup at The Kantara Initiative. The workgroup charter can be found here. A parallel workgroup focused on business and policy aspects will also be launched in the next few weeks. Anyone wishing to get involved in the workgroup can sign up to the mailing list hereand we’ll get started with the work in the next couple of weeks.

Data Protection Day: Five steps to securing data

Five steps that businesses can take to keep data safe and secure to avoid legal and regulatory trouble.
data_security_privacy_290x230_thinkstock.jpg
Research has revealed that data loss is a top concern of IT executives, according to data management firm Iron Mountain, which has compiled five steps to securing data to mark Data Protection Day
The international initiative, now in its ninth year, is aimed at raising awareness among consumers and businesses of the importance of safeguarding data, respecting privacy and creating trust.
Read more: http://www.computerweekly.com/news/2240238992/Data-Protection-Day-Five-steps-to-securing-data
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

Police Oppose Police-Tracking Function in GPS App Waze

Law enforcement agents are not happy about the Police warnings given by Wazers.
waze2
The GPS app Waze crowdsources a lot of real-time data, and with 50 million users contributing information in 200 countries, the app can show a lot. There are traffic updates, accident reports, and toll warnings. Users can even contribute the location of police they happen to spot, so drivers behind them know to stay within the speed limit and generally drive safely. But law enforcement agents are not happy about it.
Read more: http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2015/01/26/waze_has_a_police_tracking_feature_that_law_enforcement_opposes.html
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

Spyware and smartphones: how abusive men track their partners

Apps offer abusers a terrifying new toolbox to control their partners and exes. 
Phone software allows them to follow people’s movements, monitor their calls, texts and emails – and even watch them!!

Apps offer abusers a terrifying new toolbox to control their partners and exes. Phone software allows them to follow people’s movements, monitor their calls, texts and emails – and even watch them.
There are growing numbers of women, like Isobel, for whom the opportunities offered by smartphones for tracking and surveillance are nothing short of terrifying. Abusers are increasingly using this technology, say domestic violence charities. “For women experiencing domestic violence, these technologies can be used to further terrorise and intimidate them,” says Sandra Horley, the chief executive of Refuge. “Online tools and mobile technologies can provide yet another way for perpetrators to exert power and control over women.” A Women’s Aid survey found that 41% of respondents’ partners or ex-partners used their online activities to track them.
Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/jan/25/spyware-smartphone-abusive-men-track-partners-domestic-violence
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

Snowden: iPhone has secret software that can be remotely activated to spy on people

IPhone or ISpy?
Is your iPhone spying on you?

According to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, the iPhone has secret spyware that allows governments to watch users without their knowledge and consent. Snowden doesn’t use the phone because of the hidden software embedded in it, which his lawyer says can be remotely activated to watch the user.
Anatoly Kucherena explained to Russian news agency RIA Novosti that Snowden never uses an iPhone and that instead, he uses a simple phone.
Read more: http://www.neowin.net/news/snowden-iphone-has-secret-software-that-can-be-remotely-activated-to-spy-on-people
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

‘Rachel With Cardholder Services’ Coughs Up Refunds

The total amount available to repay consumers is $700,000. The FTC says it is mailing out 16,590 checks this week. Each check will be for $42.95 and must be cashed within 60 days.

If you are one of the legions of consumers who suffered through those annoying robocalls from “Rachel with Cardholder Services,” you could have money coming your way.
That’s right. The Federal Trade Commission, the nation’s consumer watchdog, has reached a settlement with a collection of companies it says used that ploy. And now a special administrator is preparing to mail out checks to victims.
Read more: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/rachel-cardholder-services-coughs-refunds/story?id=28282514
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

MICROSOFT: People Are More Scared About Internet Privacy Now Than Ever Before

“Privacy has been a concern but there’s no question that it’s reaching much higher levels than we’ve seen before,” Mark Penn, Microsoft’s chief strategy officer!

2014 wasn’t a great year for Internet security. Between the giant Sony hack that’s being called one of the biggest corporate breaches in history to the iCloud hacks that exposed celebrities’ private photos, there have been plenty of reminders of the dangers of cyber space.
In its second annual View From Around The Globe poll, Microsoft surveyed internet users worldwide to see how differently people view consumer technology. This year, users in almost every country polled said that technology has a negative impact on privacy, with India being the only exception.
Read more: http://uk.businessinsider.com/microsoft-people-scared-about-internet-privacy-2015-1
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

People are increasingly worried about privacy, say legal protections fall short

68 percent of the respondents thought technology has had a mostly negative impact on privacy!

Internet users in countries such as France, Germany and the U.S. are increasingly worried about the impact technology has on privacy, and feel legal protections are insufficient.
In 11 of the 12 countries surveyed as part of a report published by Microsoft on Monday, respondents said that technology’s effect on privacy was mostly negative. Most concerned were people in Japan and France, where 68 percent of the respondents thought technology has had a mostly negative impact on privacy.
Read more: http://www.pcworld.com/article/2872232/people-are-increasingly-worried-about-privacy-say-legal-protections-fall-short.html
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

 

Aussie Travel Cover has hundreds of thousands of records stolen in hacking, policy holders not informed

About “three quarters of a million” records of personal information had been stolen, including items like addresses and partial credit card details!

One of the country’s largest travel insurance companies opted not to tell customers about a hacking that saw potentially hundreds of thousands of Australians’ personal information stolen and parts of its customer database posted online.
Aussie Travel Cover was made aware that its computer system was hacked on December 18 last year and let third party agents know about the hack a few days later on December 23, but did not inform insurance policy holders or customers.
The hacker stole a large amount of personal information of travel insurance clients, including names, phone numbers, email addresses, travel dates and how much policies cost.
Read more: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-01-19/aussie-travel-cover-hacked-customers-not-told/6025652
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

Living with terror: Security or privacy – do we have to choose?

“The Snoopers’ Charter would sacrifice our privacy and our free expression without making us any safer”


We are clueless, let’s face it. Most of us skip innocently through cyberspace like Red Riding Hood in the deep, dark forest, picking flowers in the company of wolves. We stick to the paths we know – Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and so on – believing that, because they protect our privacy, we will be safe from the evil that may lurk elsewhere.
Read more: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/living-with-terror-security-or-privacy–do-we-have-to-choose-9985713.html
Posted by Dont Mine on Me

Ready for What’s Next? Envision a Future Where Your Personal Information Is Digital Currency

“What’s in your wallet?” Before long, the answer is going to be “you.”

Have you heard the credit card commercial that asks, “what’s in your wallet?” Before long, the answer is going to be “you.”
As our digital footprint grows, I see personal information becoming a form of digital currency – something that an individual person owns, controls and uses in exchange for “personalized” goods and services.
Read more: http://www.wired.com/2015/01/personal-information-digital-currency/
Posted by Dont Mine on Me