Why India needs to take data privacy seriously

07.08.18 07:58 AM By S.Swaminathan

Data confidentiality and privacy is a primary right which Indian consumer needs to demand, as the economy becomes more and more digitally driven.

Data privacy and protection is a fundamental foundation for an emerging data-driven economy like India. Permission marketing will be the next battleground brands or marketers will have to take cognizance of, as India transforms from a data-poor economy to a data-rich economy. Permission marketing, a word coined by marketing expert Seth Godin in a book by the same name, is a non-traditional marketing technique that advertises goods and services when advance consent is given.

Let’s look at some trends on how the Indian economy is moving towards being more and more data driven. At the last count, India has claimed first place across the world with 270 million Facebook users followed by the US which has 240 million Facebook users. Indians are leaving behind so much private data and information on this social media platform which is accessible to the world. The number of mobile wallet users in India is already over 250 million with Paytm having more than 100 million users and growing at a rapid pace. India, not China, is the world’s fastest growing mobile payment market. The number of mobile wallet transactions is expected to surge to Rs 1 trillion in 2018. By 2025, digital transactions are expected to reach $1 trillion with four out of five transactions done digitally. There is little wonder then that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the country's central bank, has promulgated Know Your Customer (KYC) norms for wallet companies. The amount of privacy data that is being left behind with wallet companies is also enormous.

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