Eye on Privacy: The Big Headache in Big Data
The year is halfway through and you've seen the headlines cropping up everywhere regarding Big Data:
- "Big Data Is Opening Doors, But Maybe Too Many"
- "Creepy $100 Million Database to Track Public School Kids"
- "The Key to Facebook's Ad Targeting May Not Be Facebook Data"
- "EBay Opens Up Its Data for Ad Targeting"
- "Equifax Might Be Selling Your Financial Info"
- "Obama Donor Database Given to Activists"
- "TSA Pondering Commercial Data to Profile Passengers"
If you're like me, you read the articles and you see flaws in the facts or in the conclusions drawn from the facts, and you're tempted to dismiss them.
At this point, you may be breathing easier because your company hasn't been the subject of an article. Not my problem, right? But, if marketing drives your business, your marketing is driven by data. Big Data drives successful marketing and we're all hooked. The above-mentioned articles affect all of us.
The smell of fear is in the air, and regulators far and wide are pointing to data brokers as the source of the problem.
Since the beginning of the year, we've seen increased threats to the collection and use of data in marketing. For example:
• The FTC released its guidance on the Children's Online Privacy Protection (COPPA) rule in the form of 92 Frequently Asked Questions. The rule went into effect on July 1 and presents a real challenge to online marketers as it greatly expands the definition of both personal data and who is covered by the act.
• "Do Not Track" legislation has been reintroduced as a bill in the Senate while still being debated in the W3C working group and at the new FTC, Chairman Edith Ramirez is calling such a standard "long overdue."
• There is a battle being waged in California over the "Right to Know Act," which would require Internet companies, upon request, to provide consumers with the data they have collected on them and the third parties that have received the data.