Name, age and favourite product: Why companies collect your data

Name, age and favourite product: Why companies collect your data

What is personal data?

Personal data are any information on which you can identify a customer: name, telephone, email, address. There is no precise list, so companies, depending on the situation, understand what to consider as personal information and what not.

Users can share information about themselves: fill out questionnaires to obtain a discount card or give an address to bring the goods home, but sometimes companies collect data using cookies files, digital prints of devices, analysis of social media behavior and IP addresses.

The client profile is created when he enters the company ' s website and agrees to hand out cookies files or sign a service contract: generally, there is an item on the processing of personal data and their transmission to third parties, and the contract must specify who the company is going to convey the user ' s information to.

What data are collected

  • General

The name, gender, contact, profession, education, and address of users are voluntarily indicated when registering on a brand or ordering site; for example, a pop pop appears on a single subscription site at the Fitmost fitness rooms with an offer of email to get a birthday discount.

How to Use

Companies use this data to create a client profile: who he is, what he does, which shops are closest to him; for example, a network of beer shops in Mirbir sends a letter to clients if a new point is opened in their city.

  • Purchasing history

By default, the business cannot collect information on purchases on cash: the sale takes place anonymously, but by means of discount cards and apps companies identify the user in each purchase and analyse which goods they prefer, which products they add to the selection, whether they participate in the stock.

How to Use

As a result of the information gathered, companies can make personal offers based on the buyer's interests and tastes; for example, Alpine's book shop puts in emails book recommendations based on the client's past purchases.

Another function is to remind you that it is time to update the goods. This is how the whole store network works: the company calculates when the tools' consumables are on average running out. By this time they send a letter of recommendation to the goods. Once purchased, the stores can ask for feedback or send clues about the goods: the Decatlon sports goods store, for example, when the bicycle is purchased, sends information about accessories and bike maintenance.

  • Biometric data

Biometry includes unique human characteristics: face, voice, fingerprints, retinas of the eye; banks, for example, collect biometrics in the compartments, and it is sufficient to allow access to the camera and microphone to transmit the data to the apps. The annex will ask for several actions: reading text excerpts or holding the finger on the sensor to read the print.

How to Use

The use of biometrics makes it easier to authorise in services. The example is FaceID and Touch ID in Apple: it is enough to turn on a camera or scan a fingerprint to buy and unblock the device. In Sberbank, a face or voice can confirm the identity for the production of the map, and in the Moscow subway can be used to pay for travel.

Biometry reinforces information security: facial recognition is difficult to cheat, while passwords can be stolen or forgotten; in the future, biometrics can be used in shops to analyse customer behaviour and to adjust personal sentences more precisely.

  • Conduct in other services

The collection of activity data from other services starts when the application is installed. The system asks the user to allow an analysis of its actions. In iOS, for example, there is no explicit prohibition on data collection: the user "requests" the application not to analyse its actions. But Apple cannot guarantee that the application will not collect information in secret.

Monitoring behavior on websites is supported by cookies files, which should also be approved by the user. Using cookies, the website memorizes the client on the website and its actions: page view, date and time of visit, device.

How to Use

Cookies files allow the website to save user data so that it is not re-authorised. Using them, for example, the Octave 999 clothing brand keeps the client's views on the website, and then offers to send information about interested items to the post office.

Actions in external services are also needed to obtain a more complete profile of the visitor's interests. For example, sites analyse behavior on competition websites. The data can then be used for setting up turret and context advertising.

What's your business data for?

The purpose of the business is to motivate the client to buy and increase the cost of the order, using the data collected, and to do so through the use of paid tools, such as television and Internet advertising, social media or search engines, and SMS with special offers.

The cheap alternatives are emails, website personalization and loyalty program. The latest tools allow companies not to attract new audiences, but to work with existing ones, reducing the cost of advertising and attracting new buyers. For example, the restaurant network italy&co has reduced the cost of attracting customers by a factor of 2.5, starting with the existing base.

The ads and personal sentences are adjusted by dividing users into segments according to their demographic characteristics, preferences and habits. Each segment is sent a proposal that can fit their tastes. For example, Level One's lecturer sends suggestions to the audience depending on the lecturer they came to.

User rights

By analysing a person's behavior online, you can not just get to know his basic characteristics, but also personal information about dreams, desires, and views, so a leak can cause serious damage.

"The company cannot force the user to pass on their personal data, but the problem is that, in most cases, the business does need data to identify the buyer and continue to interact with him: deliver the order, publish the withdrawal, call back on request," notes Kira Lucashin, lawyer Mindbox. "Another case is that entrepreneurs are not entitled to request excess information from the user, for example, the Internet shop does not need passport data to deliver the order. Therefore, the user may request an explanation as to why the company collects the information and, if the arguments are not convincing, refuse to provide it."

The client can withdraw the consent at any time and demand that all personal data be deleted. This requires contact with the company and know how to delete the data. In some cases, companies may refuse: for example, the user cannot ask the bank to delete its identity if the credit has not been paid.

After leaking information from food delivery services and online shops, personal data legislation will be tightened, and a package of amendments has already been made to the State, which requires business to notify the authorities of leaks and to connect to the state system for detecting, preventing and eliminating computer attacks has indicated that offers protect users from hackers, while most leaks are caused by company employees.

Users need to understand how the business will use the information collected and how they can be safe: for example, when ordering a home phone or apartment number, before signing an agreement, it is better to study the contract and personal data company policy. If a leak does occur, the passwords need to be changed first. The user is also entitled to file a complaint with Roskomnadzor against the company that leaked its data.