The business opportunities from big data could be lost unless consumers trust business and public sector organisations with their personal data.
According to Boston Consulting Group, without consumer trust most of the trillions of dollars of social and economic value promised from big data will go to waste.
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The company said two-thirds of the total value, estimated to reach a potential €1trn in Europe by 2020, will be lost if organisations fail to establish a trusted flow of personal data.
“The value created through digital identity could be €1trn in Europe by 2020, or roughly 8% of the combined GDP of the EU-27,” said Boston Consulting Group. "For European businesses and governments, the use of personal data will deliver an annual benefit of €330bn by 2020, bringing growth to an otherwise stagnant economy."
A global survey of 10,000 consumers, carried out by Boston Consulting Group, looked into attitudes to public and private sector organisations using their data. It revealed that privacy of personal data remains a top issue for an average of 75% of consumers in most countries. It also found that consumers are willing to allow the use of personal data for multiple purposes if organisations are “careful stewards of this information”.
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In the UK, citizens are most concerned about the use of their data by social networking sites, the public sector and banks. Consumers in the UK are least concerned about high street retailers, airlines, hotels and car manufacturers using their data.
The research found that 59% of UK consumers would let organisations use their data if they had the ability to prevent harmful uses and 78% would use tools to control personal data if available.
“Companies that excel at creating trust should be able to increase the amount of consumer data they can access by at least five to 10 times,” the research report stated.