Have you ever thought about yourself as the product? It may sound materialistic, but information on you is quantified. Everything has its price. And in the 21st century, in the era of the information society, when technology rules our world, this applies to our data twice. In this article, we will show you the value of your information. However, it is necessary to clarify at the beginning that the value of the data can be perceived as a whole (the entire market) or as a price for an individual. Have a look at this topic a bit closer. So. What is your data worth? 🤑
It can be from a few cents to a billion dollars.
Of course, the price varies on several factors. For example, it depends on the nature of the data, the urgency of its need, the purpose of its use, or the size of the company that collects and sells it. It depends on the context.
We will demonstrate this issue using real-life practical examples to provide precise numbers.
The data value of the individual
As we mentioned in the introduction, the amount representing an individual's data can vary. However, these examples indicate that it can be from a few cents to hundreds of euros.
One way to quantify the value of data is through advertising revenue. An article on this site mentions that each user generated around £1.45 in advertising revenue for Google in 2001. Less than two decades later, this share has risen to £26 per user – an increase of 1,800%. (We assume the ad was successful because it had accurate data about the percipients.)
According to the same article, companies, for example, are willing to pay more money for men's data than for women's data or the data of younger people aged 18 to 24 compared to older people by the 25 to 34-year-old age group.
You can see more stats here.
Intellectual property and privacy lawyer Paulius Jurcys, who earned his Ph.D. from Harvard Law School, mentions in his post that “basic data about an individual (e.g., age, gender, and location) is worth merely $0.0005 per person (that is $0.50 per thousand people). Financial details about an individual (such as recent payment history or health details) are slightly more valuable. In the case of Facebook, the average value of an active user’s data to Facebook is about $2 per month.” The information refers to 2019.
TechCrunch refers: “These professionals collect all types of personal data (such as public data, loyalty card data, etc.) and sell it. The value of this data varies but is often less than $1.”
"If you are not paying for a product, you are the product."
One of the largest cable companies, Comcast, was ordered to pay every customer $100 in damages for violating their privacy in 2015. The company shared customers' data with third parties even though they paid a fee to keep data private. It also gives us some idea of where we are on the financial axis.
As quantification can be a difficult nut to crack, the Financial Times has created an interactive calculator to help marketers to figure out the price of data per individual.
Bulk data sales
Some companies collect data of application users and then sell licenses for the possibility of using this data bank. As recently as 2021, Outlogic (formerly known as X-Mode) was offering to license a location-related data set called "Cybersecurity Location Data" on Datarad for $240,000/yearly. (This offer has already been deleted from the Datarade platform.) However, you can find many similar examples on this website.
We recently came across this offer that states that data from over 50,000 active users can earn over $1200/month. If we break it down, that's about $42 per user.
For example, this 2020 report from Grand View Research claims that the location data market size will have a value of $18.52 billion in 2023. According to the company's assumptions, this market will be worth 51.25 billion US dollars by 2030. And that's just talking about the data that applies to geolocation targeting.
The value of the data can also be calculated in the form of a fine. Not long ago, Meta was fined €1.2 billion by the European Data Protection Board (EDPU) – the equivalent of $1.3 billion – for transferring user data from the EU back to the US without express permission or putting in place adequate protection. After all, it is also a breach of privacy that applies to the data of users of this giant.
Additionally, some studies examine the value that data holds for us. However, we cannot compare simulation to reality. That is why we work with events and scenarios that have occurred, based on which we can observe actual valuation.
As you can see, the value of data can be quantified just like any other item in the market (such as time, products, knowledge, etc.). The prices and forms of the valuation may differ, but it only emphasizes the fact that this commodity is in demand and tradable.
However, we want to assure you that you are not at risk of anything similar with our Simple Mobile Tools apps. Instead, we bet on transparency and a fair approach to users. We are constantly trying to develop and improve the concept. That's why we switched from the free version to the Pro version. It is a small one-time fee that will ensure you use our apps forever – with no ads and no access to your data. We will be grateful if you support this idea.