As both digital and more traditional companies become more and more dependent on data to compete in today’s information economy, data is starting to have an irrefutable impact on companies’ valuation and reputation. The decisions companies make about how to use data can have an enormous impact on the success of modern enterprises, as well as on their image, their public perception, their competitors, and regulators.
Almost every entity is, or is becoming, a digital enterprise. Today’s information economy mandates nothing less. Entities are making tremendous investments in order to exploit the vast amounts of data – Big Data – that are constantly being generated by the Internet of Things (IoT), social media platforms, websites, and other sources. As confirmed by a recent Capgemini EMC Big Data report, most business leaders fear that their companies will actually become irrelevant if they fail to maximize the power of information. As companies grow more and more data-driven and data-dependent, new issues arise concerning how information in today’s economy is, or should be, valued. [Read more…]
The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a new Report on Big Data, entitled “Big Data: A Tool for Inclusion or Exclusion? Understanding the Issues,” to provide guidance to companies about their Big Data practices. While acknowledging the numerous issues associated with the use of Big Data, the FTC explicitly limited its focus to the commercial use of Big Data consisting of consumer information, and its impact on low-income and underserved populations.
Last week, my friend – I’ll call her Sally – sent out a group text to our circle of friends. She was horrified and angry about an email she had just received from a national drug store chain that she frequents. It said,
Time for more hair color?”
The message included a picture of the product she buys, correct down to the very shade she uses. [Read more…]
Editor’s Note: This article is authored by two BakerHostetler partners — an information governance practice leader and a new media, advertising, IT and privacy partner— and an associate. It is the final of a four-part series.
In our last article, we discussed the legal considerations in collecting, analyzing, and using social data. Complying with the black letter of the law is critical, but not enough; companies need to consider how their contemplated use of social data will be perceived by their customers and in the marketplace as a whole.
Companies should ask themselves, will the use of social data be viewed as intrusive, exploitative, or “creepy?” And is the use consistent with the image the company wants to project, particularly to its consumer base and investors? [Read more…]
As the pile of information that our society generates grows exponentially, and our ability to mine this information for deep insights into peoples’ psyches crosses into the realm of creepy, we must struggle with our conflicting desires for both individual privacy, and deep personalization. Citizens and consumers will expect organizations to use their data to improve their lives, while also protecting their inherent right to privacy. To remain relevant, organizations must get ahead of these paradoxical expectations by implementing clear, effective and proactive governance of individuals’ data, before such controls are forced upon them.
Careful What You Wish For
Ten years into the technology revolution created by the “Digital Trinity” of Social Media, Mobility and Advanced Analytics, it is hard for many of us to remember life before our perpetual connectedness. These three technologies have merged to create a social revolution where everything we do is watched, analyzed, and rapidly converted into actionable insight. [Read more…]