Privacy Lost…Part III: All in the Name of Transparency?

Hola Todos!

In a previous DigNuggetville posts, I highlighted just how much the marketers know about us.  One of the biggest of these firms is Acxiom, and I nearly fell out of my chair when I read the following headline: “Find out what Big Data knows about you, (it may be very wrong).”

It turns out that Acxoim unveiled a website called AboutTheData.com where if one were to put one’s name in the field, one could get a “snapshot” on what Acxiom knows (and sells to retailers and marketers) about you.  Not surprising, the data is not 100% accurate.  In fact, Acxiom states up to 30% of your data might be wrong at any given time.

What was surprising is most of the middle part of the article focused on privacy and the fact that this website “is a win for privacy advocates who have long called for increased transparency. But with that transparency comes a chance for us to see just how much information is gathered and sold — and how much of it is off-base.”

What made my jaw drop was this line two-thirds of the way through the article:

“It even asks consumers to ‘correct’ their profile in order to ensure they’re receiving the most appropriate offers.”

Say WHAT!

Let me get this straight, Acxiom is trying to increase their transparency correct?  Yet, they having the individuals in THEIR database (at least 30% inaccurate remember) CORRECT their records so they can sell a more accurate representation of us to future marketers.

Yes, you read that right – Acxiom is using a wisdom-of-crowds technique (e.g., crowdsourcing) to fix one of their biggest problems – all in the name of “transparency” – and yes, they probably can sell these more accurate records at a better price because they have been “verified” by the user.  Incredible they can get away with that.

I’m not going to check myself as last thing I want to do is help out a firm like Acxiom.

Something to think about today…

 

Best regards

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

 

Privacy…Lost – Part II: What Siri Knows About You

Hola Todos!

In Monday’s post, I opened up the privacy discussion by linking to a number of articles that illustrate how much the marketers know about us (scary stuff).  Continuing this discussion, an interesting report from Wired magazine details how the queries on Apple’s Siri are held for two years before they are deleted. Apple keeps these queries to help improve the service but at the same time, the queries are not linked to your Apple user ID or your email address – just some random number that serves as the file name.  After 6 months, the random file number is deleted and all queries are held anonymously. After 24 months, all queries are deleted.

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Privacy…Lost: What The Digital Marketers Know About You

Hola Todos!

Privacy, or they lack of, is a meaty topic worthy of a Ph.D. effort.  The more I read articles like the two I read last week, the less I should be surprised but it never turns out that way.

The first of these posts, from CNN.com, highlights the firm Acxiom, one of the largest data brokers in the business. A PBS documentary that runs a few years back detailed that Acxiom processes a billion pieces a data per day.  Don’t miss the 3-minute video by CNN interviewing the CEO.

The second of these posts in The Atlantic highlights how data firms forecasts and targets consumers.  The link as an excellent exemplar of a data forecast or chart (scroll half-way down) highlighting the level of data and analysis these firms do on individual consumers. The “don’t miss” in this post is the link to a previous article on how Target dataminded for future potential parents.

Something to check out today…

Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o

 

Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University