The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data. Why data is so important, explained.
DATA VS OIL.
Data is the world’s most valuable resource. Data is to this century what oil was to the last one: a driver of growth and change. Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Google and Microsoft are the 5 most valuable listed firms in the world. The fact that all of them control data is not a coincidence.
THE 5 MOST VALUABLE COMPANIES HAVE YOUR DATA.
Google knows what you search for, Facebook knows what you like and share, Amazon knows what you buy, and Apple and Microsoft also know many things about you.
WHY IS DATA SO IMPORTANT FOR THEM?
- It helps them improve their products. The more information Facebook has of its users, the more they can adapt their services to their tastes.
- It protects these giants from rivals. They know when a new product gains attraction and buy it or copy it. For instance, Facebook bought WhatsApp at the very beginning when it had only 60 employees. This threatens free market competition.
SHOULD I CARE ABOUT THESE GIANTS USING MY DATA?
It’s up to you. However, trading data is dangerous. Its misuse puts democracy at risk. In the 2016 US elections, Cambridge Analytica used the data of 87 million Facebook profiles without their consent to deliver pro-Trump material.