It’s becoming more commonplace for consumers to share personal data in exchange for benefits from a business. For example, the Accenture Consumer-Driven Innovation Survey found that when asked if they would provide access to personal information for various purposes, the majority of respondents responded favorably or said, “it depends on the information”:

  • Optimize insurance coverage (82 percent)
  • Optimize insurance premiums (81 percent)
  • Receive more personalized products (78 percent)

However, there are growing challenges to the use of personal data. For example, The New York Times reported that a number of life insurers are using wearable devices to incentivize healthy behaviors and offer discounts, but the story also highlights some of the privacy concerns with such programs.

As I mentioned last week, the business value of personal data is tremendous—but only if consumers allow firms to use their data. In an extensive report examining the results of a survey of nearly 600 business professionals globally, Accenture identifies six challenges to using personal data for business value:

  • The crisis of trust. More than half (55 percent) of US respondents said customers are not confident in business’ ability to keep personal data secure. Several high-profile data breaches have only exacerbated the issue. Furthermore, 61 percent of US businesses believe they are not doing enough to build trust with customers around data use.
  • Customers are acting on their privacy concerns. In general, customers are becoming more aware of data privacy and responding accordingly. For example, they may change their passwords more frequently, opt out of services and avoid businesses that do not protect their privacy.
  • The data dividend. Individuals are realizing that there is value in their personal data, and are demanding value from businesses in exchange for sharing it. For example, telematics programs are based on customers sharing driving data in exchange for the potential for lower premiums.

Join me next week as I look at the remaining three challenges that insurers must address before they can realize the full potential of using personal data to drive business value.

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