Data Brokers: The Dark Industry of Selling Your Identity for Profit.
James Jani James Jani
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 Published On Mar 16, 2020

Data Brokers… a dark industry based on selling your identity for profit that is currently worth billions.

When people say “data is the new oil” there’s no other industry that better illustrates this than the world of data brokers.

In this video we’ll take a look at exactly how data brokers are taking your personal information and selling it off for a hefty profit… all behind your back.

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YOUR DATA
Your name, your age, your height, your weight, where you live, where you work, your family, your friends, your likes, your dislikes, your phone number, your email, your health conditions, your buying habits, your credit score, your political beliefs, your religious beliefs, who you text…

These are all examples of ‘data points’. And these pieces of data are very valuable things.

WHERE IS PERSONAL DATA SOURCED?
In order to source this information, begin by scraping data from public records. Things like: social media pages, property records, court records, birth certificates, voter registration information, bankruptcy records.

Then go ahead and purchase data from OTHER companies. That’s right: other companies that have your data can make an extra stream of revenue for themselves by selling the information they have on their customers.

Create “free” websites and services, that collect data from your users. Put ‘trackers’ on these websites/services that detect a user’s location, their contact list, their photos, etc.

CREATING PROFILES FROM OUR DATA
Finally, once we’ve gathered all this data, we can begin to create ‘profiles’ of individuals. This can detail an individual’s behaviour/personality when it comes to their buying habits, their likes/dislikes, their political affiliations, their health concerns, etc.

Once we have created these profiles… it’s time to sell!

SELLING THE DATA
You can sell this information to… pretty much whoever wants it.

The most common customers that data brokers have at the moment are marketing companies. If a gym had a list of individuals who were interested in getting fit, that would be a very valuable audience for them to target with their advertisements.

But you can also sell this data to health insurance companies, banks, ‘people search’ websites, governments, and other data brokers.

THE DILEMMA
Although it sounds quite sinister, this industry does pose a dilemma: if a many of the free websites and apps that you use require your data in order to stay profitable – is it really such a problem? If it’s just being used for marketing purposes, is there a big consequence to that?

This is a current argument that is going on in the industry at the moment, and it’s one that I have struggled with getting to grips with as well. One thing that I do believe strongly is that the way in which your data is managed should be regulated fare more than it currently is.

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All materials in these videos are used for educational purposes and fall within the guidelines of fair use. No copyright infringement is intended. If you are or represent the copyright owner of materials used in this video and have a problem with the use of said material, please contact me via my email in the "about" page on my channel.

AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: there may be a few links in this description that, at no cost to you, will earn me a commission if you choose to click them and make a purchase 🙂
Don’t worry – I only ever promote things that have genuinely helped me.

Copyright © James Jani 2020

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