With Big Data Comes Big Responsibility

by Edward O'Brien 0

“Our world today runs on data. It’s changing the way we browse the Internet, run our businesses, treat medical patients and invest in technology. It’s the key to solving society’s biggest problems: famine, disease, poverty and ineffective education. And it is powering the global economy.

But the data-driven economy is at a crossroads. With the eruption of information, we also open ourselves up to new risks and privacy concerns. As companies adopt more interconnected products and systems, the “Internet of Things” could usher in the next wave of challenges that range from data breaches to other potential privacy concerns if information is used improperly. As a society, we must decide whether to champion the explosion of connected information or allow its detractors to significantly constrain the innovation and growth ahead.

Since 2007, data-related products and services have generated about 30% of real personal consumption growth, second only to healthcare goods and services, according to a 2014 report from the Progressive Policy Institute. The mobile app industry alone accounted for more than 750,000 jobs in 2013-jobs that didn’t exist a decade ago.”

The topic of big data and the increasing use of unstructured data in financial services has been a key theme in recent Mercator Advisory Group research. Banks and credit unions must be ever-mindful of customer privacy and preferences, as well as legal and compliance issues. And with financial institutions looking to better understand the want and needs of their customers and members through social media, they must manage all of this big data efficiently and effectively, or else risk alienating and losing them to other institutions.


Overview by Ed O’Brien, Director, Banking Channels Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group

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