Data companies can't be defined by the Cambridge Analytica scandal

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Data companies shouldn’t be met with suspicion. For every bad actor, there are other organizations that proactively harness data to improve the state of our economy and the financial well-being of individual consumers.

Consumers have plenty to learn when it comes to using financial services and, ultimately, harnessing the power of their data. From data rights to common security measures, organizations that help consumers understand the intricacies of financial data companies as well as how such organizations are increasing data access can pave the way to more fruitful relationship moving forward.

The controversy surrounding Cambridge Analytica has caused plenty of concern among consumers. Considering the sensitivity of financial information, it’s easy to see why. There are some key points companies need to emphasize when educating consumers. These will encourage consumers to leverage financial apps and services for their own benefit.

Security measures are stringent across top-notch financial data companies, and for good reason. Consumers need to know their information is in safe hands. Major audits are just one example of the many ways in which financial data companies are working to calm consumer concerns.

By ensuring they meet or exceed bank-level security, have the right tools in place and are safely storing information, data companies can use audits as an opportunity to showcase their commitment toward protecting consumer data. If in fact an audit has already taken place, organizations might send users to partner websites or services. Meanwhile, consumers bringing an app to a financial institution may result in an audit.

Consumers can grant permission for data access to the apps and services of their choice. Although most consumers aren’t in the habit of engaging with their financial data, leveraging such information promises to open the door for greater insight into their overall financial health. Rather than wondering where they stand, consumers have the opportunity to tap into new tools and share their data across accounts in ways that can help them make more informed decisions moving forward.

In the same that way consumers can determine which apps or services have permission to access their data, they’re entitled to control when or how their data is used. Specific terms and conditions adhered to by all financial data companies help ensure consumers remain in charge. While individual data should never be sold, there may be times when anonymized data can be used to test new products and upgrade solutions that will serve the greater good.

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