martes, 23 de abril de 2013

Datos vs privacidad: el talón de aquiles del mercado de apps

El mercado de las aplicaciones móviles, basado en gratuidad a cambio de recolección de información, se mueve en un delicado equilibro ‘datos vs privacidad’

 La privacidad –o, más bien, su ausencia– es una de las principales amenazas para el desarrollo del mercado de las aplicaciones móviles; si no la principal, si tenemos en cuenta que prácticamente todas ellas basan su modelo de negocio en la oferta de servicios gratuitos a cambio de la utilización de los datos de sus usuarios, por lo que cualquier circunstancia que impida o ponga en riesgo esta relación supondría una estocada mortal para el sector.
¿Estamos, pues, ante una burbuja, un sistema empresarial con pies de barro, un castillo de naipes? En un entorno como el actual, de efervescencia creativa y desarrollo constante, la práctica del intercambio de datos es un hecho tácito que todo el mundo parece aceptar, probablemente porque la velocidad a la que se desarrolla todo y la necesidad de sumergirte en toda esta vorágine atenúan o impiden en gran medida la conciencia sobre los pros y los contras de este modelo.
Sin embargo, todo esto puede cambiar en cualquier momento. No sólo por iniciativas administrativas que acaben por endurecer las leyes –como ya está ocurriendo, de hecho, en instancias como la Unión Europea–, sino también –o como detonante de aquéllas–, la propia rebelión del consumidor una vez sea consciente de lo que ocurre o se incremente el número de denuncias o revelación de abusos, como ya ha venido sucediendo de forma esporádica en los últimos tiempos.

Para valorar la dimensión de este riesgo, vienen al pelo documentos como el Informe sobre Privacidad Global 2013 de MEF –una encuesta sobre 9.500 usuarios de móviles en 10 países: EEUU, Reino Unido, China, India, Catar, Sudáfrica, México, Brasil, Indonesia y Arabia Saudí–, al que llego vía VentureBeat y que, aunque orientado al sector de las apps móviles, es perfectamente extensible a todo el ámbito del comercio de datos porque nos indica la percepción que la ciudadanía tiene de estos sistemas:

  • Sólo un 37% de los consumidores se siente cómodo compartiendo información personal con una app. El 33% no se siente del todo cómodo.

  • A la gran mayoría de los consumidores le parece importante saber exactamente qué información se está recolectando (70%) y cuál se está compartiendo (71%) con terceros. A la mitad le parece muy importante.
Unos datos que revelan a las claras cómo el negocio de datos personales se mueve sobre las arenas movedizas de la permisividad del usuario.

Precisamente es también el de la privacidad uno los principales campos de batalla de los defensores de los derechos y libertades en la Red, que ven en esta práctica no sólo un abuso comercial, sino un claro peligro para los derechos ciudadanos, dada la ya más que contrastadacolaboración –voluntaria o impuesta– entre las empresas y gobiernos represivos.

Con este cóctel, muy fino han de hilar los emprendedores y muy presente han de tener factores tan demandados en nuestra era como la transparencia –tan reivindicada en el ámbito político– para intentar mantener el equilibrio entre lo que te da de comer (recolección y uso de datos) y lo que te puede matar (abusos de privacidad), en un espacio en el que, aunque a menudo se desdeñe, el usuario tiene también la última palabra.

Fuente: www.internautas.org






MEF Global Privacy Report 2013

London: MEF today announced the results of its first Global Privacy Report. Supported by AVG Technologies, the ten country study of 9,500 respondents reveals consumer attitudes towards the use of their personal information by mobile app providers.
Against a backdrop of recent high profile transgressions, the report was carried out in partnership with mobile specialists On Device Research to understand global consumer understanding and perceptions of apps that gather and use personal data such as address book information and location.
The explosion of the apps ecosystem is driven by new business models where many apps are free or heavily discounted which of course consumers love, but where developers monetize the information they collect on their users.
The report identified:
  • Only a third of consumers (37%) are comfortable sharing personal data with an app.
  • The majority of consumers consider it important to know when an app is gathering (70%) and sharing (71%) their personal information.
  • Perceptions are that security around data is robust with only 18% stating they are not confident that their personal information is being protected.
  • Females and older consumers (over 35s) are more likely to have concerns over privacy.
  • Growth markets including Brazil, Mexico and South Africa are least comfortable sharing personal information.
“Two main themes emerge from the research: Consumers demand transparency when apps are sharing their data, and importantly the app community needs to do a better job of explaining to consumers why it’s in their interests to do so,” commented Andrew Bud, MEF Global Chair.
“This lack of active transparency and education risks holding back the global mobile content and commerce market. MEF’s 2012 Global Consumer Survey found that 35 per cent of consumers do not purchase more often on their mobile because of a lack of trust. We are committed to working with our members to help the industry address this challenge,” he continued.
“For every one of us with a stake in the future of mobile apps, the MEF Global Privacy Report delivers a stark message that’s also filled with exciting opportunity,” said J.R. Smith, CEO, AVG Technologies. “We need to deliver transparency, security, and control or we fail. And maybe, amid an unprecedented wealth of opportunity for innovation and market creation, fail even to survive.”
The report analyses four key factors of privacy:

Transparency:

  • 70 % of all consumers think it’s important to know what information is being gathered by an app (and 46% think it’s very important)
  • 71 % of all consumers think it’s important to know what information is being shared by an app (and 49% think it’s very important)
Consumers understand the impact of mobile apps on their privacy. They want app providers to be transparent when it comes to the use of their personal information so they can make an informed decision about whether to download the app.

Comfort:

  • 33% are not at all comfortable sharing personal information
  • 35% are not at all comfortable sharing location information, suggesting consumers do not consider it especially sensitive.
  • More than half (52%) are not at all comfortable storing their billing information within an app
Consumers are either choosing to ignore apps until such time as they can trust them not to share their personal information or more worryingly they are engaging with apps not knowing that the app is sharing information without their permission.

Security

  • Only 18% of consumers lack confidence in the security of their personal information
  • This is somewhat higher in growth markets 22% in Saudi Arabia and 27% in South Africa
Security is a broad topic and clearly has a key impact on consumer trust. This survey asked consumers about security in relation to privacy. In this context, consumer perceptions fair well. Most mobile users trust app providers to safely protect their personal information.

Control

  • A third of consumers (33%) think they have complete control over how their personal information is used for advertising purposes.
In reality it is unlikely consumers are able to control the way companies use their personal information, or if they can, it is likely few will understand how to exercise control. This means there is a gap between the power they think they have, and what they are actually able to do. This paves the way for a possible ‘wake-up call’ that will dent trust further.
The report is part of MEF’s on-going activities to champion and advance Consumer Trust in the mobile industry. This was formalised last year with the launch of the Privacy in Mobile Applications Initiative whose 17 member companies Working Group has a remit to establish industry wide best practice across the mobile value-chain built on the consumer’s informed consent.

Download the free executive summary