Tags: personal

Unlocking the Potential of Personal’s Private Data Vault

Unlocking the Potential of Personal’s Private Data Vault

Beyond • December 19, 2011

“You had me at hello” is what I thought about Personal the minute I checked out their website. I just want my life made simpler, more streamlined, and Personal arrives at my digital doorstep. Their beautiful site, the clean layout and, more importantly, its practical and timely platform are a user’s dream come true. So what is Personal? Personal is a free secure digital data vault that stores your information. From personal data as important as your account numbers, as trivial as your favorite recipe, to business data, including your contact lists, for example. Personal takes digital conversion to the next level – it makes it functional and accessible, much like cloud technology, and you can access it from anywhere anytime. How Personal Works Stored data is neatly compartmentalized into what Personal refers to as “Gems.” A user’s dashboard of Gems will look a lot like monotone iPad apps – easy to identify and use. Beyond that, Gems can be shared with others by being classified as public, and other users can access the information by downloading it. Any user can quickly keep up with “Gem activity” so you can keep abreast on what Gem exchanges have been taking place. You can share gems to a contact or email address, which from a business perspective makes communication much more fluid. You no longer have to burden yourself with digital files stored on your computer or mobile. But unlike some other similar sounding platforms, not just anyone has access to your network of Gems. You choose your personal network of contacts and you choose if and what you want to share with a broader public community. Personal’s Business Molding Potential While Personal founders understood the appeal of creating digital vaults of information, the interest really stems from the ability to share the information with others. The idea of social sharing and communal information networks is no longer a trend – it’s the way we live and the way we do business. So much like PearlTrees, the idea that useful information will always be shared and that sharing it is a mutually advantageous arrangement, is what makes the creation and perpetuation of such platforms a current favorite among developers. The idea is for everyday people to turn to Personal to store their data. The next step is creating a platform where Personal automatically sources the data and then offers the appropriate data to an authorized individual. The core concept is to eliminate the need for that burden of signing forms in triplicate (times however many number of forms). Now a user can authorize Personal data to sort these forms for them. The business potential here is monumental on both the B2C and B2B end. From a business to consumer end, users can authorize business owners to extract the necessary information needed for a transaction, a membership, etc.; on the business to business end, executive personnel no longer have to deal with long tiresome paperwork. On both sides, information is clearly communicated quickly, effectively and efficiently. Tedious work that would otherwise have taken much longer to do (and in the case of B2C transactions, deterred consumers) is streamlined into one quick strike. Naturally the biggest question mark gets placed on just how much emphasis Personal places on privacy. Business owners can rest assured that Personal has also taken great strides to ensure that private data stays private. Aside from being involved with the “Privacy by Design” Program, Personal user data vaults can be accessed with a user-chosen password that Personal doesn’t store. Beyond that, not even Personal employees can access private data and they’ve ensured that their 256-bit SSL encryption will keep hackers at bay.


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Respect Your Customers’ Personal Information & Reap Results

Respect Your Customers’ Personal Information & Reap Results

Beyond • March 25, 2010

The personal information your prospects provide to you has to be treated not only with total security, but also with exceptional sensitivity. To maximize your customers\' comfort, realize that they are uneasy about sharing that information with you and ensure that your email marketing messages reflect your care. Innocuous Information Used For The Wrong Purposes By the early 1930s, the Netherlands had established a very thorough population registration system similar to an extensive census in order to simplify municipal administration. The government collected extensive personal information on each Dutch citizen and in order to ensure that they received correct burial procedures, also asked the religion of each person. Once the Nazis invaded the Netherlands, the records were all easily in their grasp. They used this information to determine which citizens were Jews and Gypsies, and proceeded to execute them within weeks. As a result, the Netherlands had the highest percentage of Jews killed by the Nazis, fully 73% of that population as compared to 25% in France. This historical event not only demonstrates that \"the road to hell is paved with good intentions,\" but also that data which has been collected on individuals for completely innocuous reasons can be skewed to dark purposes. The AOL Blunder That Revealed 650,000 Users The early internet powerhouse AOL committed an enormous personal privacy violation in 2006 when they, completely by accident, posted the complete search records of well over 650,000 AOL users in a massive 4.4 GB file. Although these individuals were not directly identified, it turns out that most people conduct search engine queries on their own names or even social security numbers, so many are very easily determined. Suddenly, individual web surfers were no longer anonymous and every single search term they had queried was public information, revealing every manner of eccentricity or outright perversion. \"User 927\" even became a bit of a cyber-legend as their search history was particularly chilling and became the subject of a major theatrical play. These AOL users would likely not have typed those terms into the search box had they known that it was not a strictly private event and might even end up on stage! Permission Based Marketing Treasures Privacy The sensitivity level of most online users towards protecting their privacy seems to diminish each passing day as the prevailing view is that it\'s hopeless anyway. However, that does not translate into active approval of privacy violations, and this discretion should be very carefully noted by email marketers. Permission based email marketing is a covenant between the brand and the consumer: the brand asks for permission to send email messages and the individual agrees. It is also understood that along the way, the brand will be collecting information about the individual\'s preferences for the sole purpose of offering products and services that best suit their proclivities. Most consumers are more or less in agreement with this process as it has become nearly universal, but what they don\'t want to see is their personal information flaunted. This does not only apply to revealing that information to third parties, but even by direct reference within the email marketing message itself. Nuance & Subtlety Are The Keys To Considerate Emails How the personal information is embodied in the email is where nuance comes very much into play. An elegant reference to their item of interest is always preferable to a clumsy direct statement. If we consider the rather extreme example of a pharmaceutical company communicating with a sufferer of a highly contagious disease, subtlety in portraying the clinical information is going to be preferable to \"Hi Typhoid Mary, don\'t infect everyone you know, buy…\" Compassionate consideration of your readers\' personal privacy will be appreciated and rewarded. Keep that in mind when planning your next campaign.


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