Why Prmit is needed in todays digital environment
Setting the scene
For decades companies have centered their business models around the processing of digital traces and personal data. The processing have allowed companies to gather insights into customers, increase their marketing and create individual digital personas based on personal data. In 2010 Facebook was worth $100b, where in 2019 their growth increased with 454% to $577b. The market capitalization has increased exponentially for companies exploiting the digital possibilities, making data-driven companies some of the most successful corporations when measured on their revenue.
Data-driven companies have transformed and shaped societies, through the abilities to contextualize data and draw new insights from it. Today, the average consumer utilizes numerous technologies every day, making it attractive for companies’ business models to be centered around the processing of consumer’s digital traces. Digital traces are often fully intentional and visible. However, the invisible and unintentional traces as website visits, searches and personal data are often the data that creates the most value for companies.
Despite the high amount of data collection for multiple purposes, it is hard for users to understand what companies are using their personal data for and whether the usage is secure. And we all do it – click ‘accept’ on cookies without reading the information, or accept the terms and conditions. It has become second nature to trust companies in the processing of personal data in exchange of gaining access to a website or utilize a service. In Denmark, a survey found that 47% of private citizens felt that they were in control of their personal data in online settings, despite that more than 40% of companies lack a complete overview of how they are processing data and how they store it.
Without questioning what happens when clicking ‘accept’, or the data transaction taking place, companies are granted free access to personal data while leaving behind individuals who become detached from their digital footprints. This limits the ability for individuals to enforce their legal rights, and as a result individuals tend to neglect the actual value of their personal data.
General data protection regulation has been implemented to outline legal standards for companies processing personal data, whilst protecting individuals. The GDPR contains 99 articles enhancing how individuals can access their personal data and limit how organizations must act when processing personal data. On average only 18% of EU citizens have exercised their GDPR-rights despite the majority being concerned about the use of their personal data. We believe that the complex digital environment, individuals lack of knowledge, and no centralized tools facilitate the gap between individuals concerns and actions.
It is not only EU citizens that are confused about their legal rights. According to research, companies apparently still fail on fulfilling their legal rights of GDPR, as 50% of companies handling data access requests have flaws in their procedures of identifying users and when transferring personal data back to the individuals. This exposes users to new threats and pitfalls, even if the data controllers otherwise store and manage data internally in compliance with the GDPR and other data regulations.
Research have also emphasized how 30% of companies don’t respond to GDPR requests at all. This raises concerns from two perspectives. First, individuals are being left in the dark regarding which companies have access to their personal data and how it is being used, distributed and stored. Second, companies struggle to standardize their data access request processes or emphasize enough transparency to ensure they are handling personal data in a fair, lawful and transparent manner.
At Prmit we want to challenge the current way of processing personal data as we believe there is a better way for all parties. Our ambition is to create a safer online space for individuals, while enabling companies to provide a better privacy experience for their customers.
We believe that the individual should be in complete control of their own data. On average, more than 250 companies have access to an individuals data, and we believe that it is the individual’s right to easily identify these companies. Keeping track of your digital traces, while trying to understand how your data is being used and for which purposes can be a challenging time-consuming process. Not with prmit. Starting with Danish consumers and Danish Shopify webshops we will provide individuals with a central tool to control their data in all Danish Shopify webshops.
The aim of prmit is therefore to strengthen individuals’ means to enforce their privacy rights. To do so, we need to create the next generation of personal data management. We strive to assist people in understanding the importance of acknowledging personal data as something valuable and private, through education and by making the processing of personal data transparent.