With the Covid-19 pandemic, the amount of financial data collected by companies has grown by 400%.
This was revealed by Mine, a platform that helps consumers take ownership of their online data.
In total, on average, each person’s data is held by 350 companies, including around 60 that hold the financial data of Britons. Of these, 25% of the top 20 companies that Britons trust most to hold their financial data are gaming companies.
This percentage has increased dramatically since before Covid-19, when there was only one online gaming company (Steampowered) in the top 20.
The pandemic has helped this growth by accelerating digitization, acting as a catalyst for new ways of doing things remotely, and this has created a greater need for people to share their financial data with companies that provide online services.
Companies with the most data
In the UK, the top companies holding people’s financial data are PayPal, Amazon and Apple, but the top 20 also include eBay, Steampowered, Spotify and Argos. Before the pandemic, 25% of the top 20 were travel companies such as Booking.com, Airbnb, Easyjet, Trainline and British Airways, but this has now fallen to 10%.
Netflix is the sixth most popular company in the UK for financial data retention, whereas before the pandemic it was not even in the top 20.
Eventbrite is also growing strongly in this respect, probably because many people registered and made payments for virtual events during the pandemic.
Other companies that the British trust a lot for their financial data are YouTube, Uber, Spotify and Coinbase.
CEO and co-founder of Mine, Gal Ringel, commented:
“As the world is slowly going back to normal we expect to see a new hybrid way of consuming that will combine the digital world with the physical world. People’s financial data footprint has grown an astounding 400% since the start of the pandemic and I have no doubt the digital acceleration and use of remote services, including more online payments and sharing financial data, will continue as people utilise online services.
This trend, combined with on-going data breaches highlights the importance of keeping a lean digital footprint by keeping track of who has our data – especially very sensitive data like our financial details. The onus also lies with businesses to make sure the financial data they hold is kept safe and sound, and importantly, once a user is done using the service, there are simple steps in to efficiently implement their ‘right to be forgotten”.
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