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Who Owns the Personal Data

‘Big Data’ has been a holistic theme for various industries and businesses in Japan recently like the rest of the world. So would ‘Personal Data’ be shortly. To signify the attention increase of the personal data management issue, about 100 of business professionals, from opinion leaders in business, academic, and public sectors, gathered on February 18, 2016 at the Next Marketing Platform Lab (NMPLAB) to learn about the Consumer Side Platform (CSP) concept.

The 7th meeting of the Next Marketing Platform Lab was kicked off by the organizer, Mr. Hiroto Ebata introducing the ‘Marketing 4.0’ concept which applies the self-actualization need for consumers to Marketing advocated by Dr. Philip Kotler in the World Marketing Forum 2014. The past NMPLAB activities were showcased in a short video on the activities of over 3,000 members.

A series of presentations and panel discussions ran for 2.5 hours for the audience which consisted of line-of-business managers, senior managers, and business owners. Makoto Shirota of Nomura Research Institute delivered a keynote speech to describe the trend of personal data management. Kosaku Yamaguchi of Estonian Investment Agency/Enterprise Estonia followed to introduce the world leading Estonian digital government case which Japan can refer to. Then, panelists including Naoyuki Ito of INTAGE, Prof. Koiti Hasida of the University of Tokyo, and Yusuke Shouno of Warrantee made a brief presentation and conducted the panel discussions which included all of the presenters.

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Below is excerpt of and reference to each session.

1)    Keynote: Makoto Shirota, Nomura Research Institute

Mr. Shirota, the author of “The Impact of Personal DataJapanese) delivered the overview of his research and elaborated how personal data has been dealt in the world. Today, many businesses are seeking “attentions” of consumers to collect data based on presumed demand of goods and services. People submit personal info to firms, and also pay for goods and services. Yet, in the Western world, people started realizing the value providing their personal information like what they specifically want. Consumers started to take control of what data to provide in order to get what kind of goods and services. Individuals send some form of request for proposals (RFP) to firms through Personal Data Store (PDS) where deals are closed. Thus, businesses compete for “intentions” rather than attentions. Governments in UK and US have also set up systems to utilize personal data and intentions for better public services.

Shirota suggested businesses from now on will need to articulate what benefits they can provide to consumers by collecting personal data. It is also important to clarify the firm’s objectives and policies behind collecting data from individuals.

 

2)    Kosaku Yamaguchi, Estonian Investment Agency/Enterprise Estonia

Mr. Yamaguchi talked about the nation’s electronic government consisted of citizens’ personal data submitted upon consent and will. Estonian electronic government is in operation for 15 years whereas Japan just started to issue ‘My Number’, which are national identification numbers to run the digital social security and tax system.

Mr. Yamaguchi touched on the basics of Estonia’s digital government, and stated the concept building is the most important element. For example, Estonia advocated the importance of transparency as opposed to the history of former USSR. The Estonian government articulated its best possible efforts to aim for citizens’ data security as well as convenience. The government has been making strenuous efforts with the private sectors on educating citizens upon data management and security from an early age. Accordingly, Estonia has achieved holistic and cost-effective public services with which data ownership belongs to citizens.

 

3)    Naoyuki Ito, INTAGE

Mr. Ito briefed on the trend of Consumer Side Platform (CSP) in Japanese. He quoted Mr. Ebata for the first definition of CSP appeared in Japan in an Adver Times article issued in January, 2014 (Japanese).

CSP, which secures individual privacy and data control, is the marketing platform to maximize benefits of consumers who provide personal data. This is opposed to current platform designed to maximize benefits of advertisers and media which collect data. Ito pointed out the non-existence of true CSP at this stage. Currently, various businesses collect personal data, issue points upon purchases, and try to enclose consumers. However, such purchase points barely touch on consumers’ mind and purchase decisions. This leads back to the need of CSP and the value of Marketing 4.0 where self-actualization is granted.

Ito later unveiled how the concept and initiatives concerning CSP have formulated in his blog post (Japanese).

 

4)    Koiti Hasida, the University of Tokyo

After his presentation, Mr. Ito introduced Prof. Koiti Hasida, the University of Tokyo, as the head of Distributed Big Data Consortium driving efforts toward CSP. Prof. Hasida has been advocating Decentralized Personal Data Store (D-PDS) for individuals, not businesses, to manage their own personal data. Hasida elaborated the importance of the customers’ data ownership; with D-PDS, each individual grasps how his/her data is used, and determines whom to share the data with and for what purposes. This self-information control will lower data-leakage risk and better realize customers’ needs. Hasida explained an existing case of D-PDS with the personal life repository (PLR) which is run at a nursing home in Yamanashi, Japan. Individual data subjects’ and their families’ management of their medical and nursing data will lead to customer-centric, vendor-neutral, scalable and efficient medical and nursing care.

 

5)    Yusuke Shouno, Warrantee

Mr. Ito at the previous presentation also mentioned Mr. Shouno as an agency or third party to run a secure consumer side platform. Mr. Shouno, the head of Warrantee runs the platform service to the ID connection trust framework under the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI). Shouno described how a holistic system is operated to protect users of consumer electronics by liaising them with manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, and recyclers through digital warrantee.

 

6)    Panel Discussions

After presentations of five speakers, there was a panel discussion moderated by Mr. Ebata. A topic was casted on Apple Inc. resisted FBI’s order to unlock encryption of an iPhone for the national security investigation. Opinions concerned that safety and security are two different issues; there may be cases where national securities need to come first and foremost; and the distributed data personality may benefit future cases.

 

Further details and links to presentations can be found in the report of Mr. Bun Ohita in Japanese.

Read the full article here.

 

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