Consumers have at last woken up to how much their personal data is worth to companies, valuing a single piece of information – such as an email address or location data – at up to £20, according to a new study.
The second Future of Digital Trust study by mobile operator Orange quizzed mobile phone owners across the UK, France, Poland and Spain and investigated ten core types of data that people may be willing to share.
In total, the 2,023 adults polled considered the cumulative value of the ten data-sets to be worth £140, rising to £200 per ten pieces of data if they did not know the company they were dealing with.
Some 80% of respondents said they know their personal data has a value for companies, with a further 78% agreeing that this value increases the closer they match a brand’s target customer demographic.
Meanwhile more than two-thirds (67%) of respondents said businesses benefit most from the sharing of data, while only 6% said consumers benefit most.
The core data types people were asked about included purchase history, location, email addresses of themselves and friends and families, date of birth, and personal income.
However, while customers may value their own data, it could be a while before this is recognised by companies, with one recent report claiming even the most private details are being bought for a fraction of a penny.
Over the past few years the business of accumulating personal details about consumers to better target them for advertising has mushroomed into a multi-billion pound industry.
One study even went as far as to predict the value of European consumers’ personal data could grow to nearly a trillion euros (£810bn) annually by 2020.
It was this market that former Capital One marketing chief Justin Basini was aiming to tap with a joint venture with Howard Huntley called Allow.
It offered to remove customers from marketing databases and register them with opt-out services such as the Mail Preference Service (MPS) and Email Preference Service. The firm then sold a customer’s data back to companies once they had chosen which brands they wanted to receive marketing from.
At the time, Basini claimed the company was one of the first to create a business model around the ‘volunteered personal information’ market. However, it failed to get enough consumers and brands to sign up and folded in 2013.
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