Why You Need to Own Your Data

Owning what’s yours sounds simple enough, right? Not when it comes to your personal data. Owning your data can be complex – even when it shouldn’t be. Where does your data go? Who has access to your data? Why should you own your data? We’re here to give you an answer.

Where does your data go and who owns it?

In the world of technological innovations, data is everywhere – your smart phone collecting personal data, your doctor’s office and pharmacies collecting health data, and now, even your refrigerator collecting your shopping data. Currently, your data is being stored with the company that you create it with. The data may be accessible and “in your hands”, but it’s typically stored in a data warehouse owned by the company where you inputted it.

Musician WILL.I.AM wrote an article for the Economist and said, “As a musician, I benefit from the copyright system that attaches ownership rights to my lyrics and instrumental tracks. Why should the data that I generate be handled any differently? It makes no sense that the information is used as the raw material to produce billions of dollars of income for massive “data monarchs” yet is of no financial value to me.”

What does the company do with your data?

The data that the company acquires will often be handed off to data brokers, who will then analyze and sell your information without giving any reward or compensation to you. An article published by WIRED explained, “These firms compile info from publicly available sources like property records, marriage licenses, and court cases. They may also gather your medical records, browsing history, social media connections, and online purchases. Depending on where you live, data brokers might even purchase your information from the Department of Motor Vehicles. Don’t have a driver’s license? Retail stores sell info to data brokers, too.”

The article also adds that while some of the information may be inaccurate or out of date, it can still be valuable to corporations, marketers, investors, etc. According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, American companies are estimated to have spent $19 billion acquiring and analyzing consumer data in 2018.

EHR Data wants to help you gain back control

EHR Data wants to put the power back in your hands. It is your data to share, and if you decide to, you should be rewarded for sharing it. We also want to provide you with a utility where you can store all of your data, including health information, in one place.

WILL.I.AM wrote, “Today, my gadgets may count my steps, but they aren’t seeing the big picture: what I ate, how I felt, what my blood pressure is. New services, built from the point of view of the consumer, will benefit me by sharing and interconnecting my own data, rather than selling it on. When more trust is established, my personal “agent” or “assistant” should merge relevant things together that are currently just disconnected data points.”

Learn more about our goals here.