Personal Data Value Calculator: A State-by-State Analysis

Data is as good as gold these days, and Americans are building on it more than they realize. For example, during 2020, it is estimated that the specific person made 1.7 megabytes of data every second of every day.

It’s also hugely valuable, and many companies are willing to pay billions to get their hands on it—the bread and butter of companies like Google and Meta to help brands target potential customers. Is. Collecting and selling personal or consumer data has also spawned an entire industry of data brokers that are worth their own. hundreds of billions of dollarsAnd that includes companies like Experian and Spokeo.

In short: your data is valuable. So, for how much would a normal person be willing to sell if they could, say, put it up for auction?

We have ballpark figures: The average US buyer would be willing to sell their personal data for $1,452.25, according to survey data From CouponBirds, a coupon and consumer information website.

The survey included responses from more than 3,500 consumers in the United States, and the CouponBirds team was also able to break down the data by state—they found that people in Colorado would ask hypothetically the most for their personal data at over $2,800. . In contrast, people in Tennessee ask for the least: $623.04.

From that data set, here are the states where people would ask most and least for their personal data, if it were to hypothetically go up for auction:

States with highest values:

  • 1. Colorado: $2,820.67
  • 2. Nebraska: $2,784.75
  • 3. Wyoming: $2,347.33
  • 4. Minnesota: $2,202.55
  • 5. Oklahoma: $2,016.00

States with lowest values:

  • 50. Tennessee: $623.04
  • 49. idaho: $742.30
  • 48. Michigan: $801.17
  • 47. Mississippi: $866.43
  • 46. Utah: $919.75

Clearly, states in the West and parts of the Midwest place a premium on their data, something that seems to mesh with the underlying sense of individualism in those parts of the country. But this brings up a more important question: How should Americans value their personal data? While some people actually have the option of handing over their data for cash, this is changing hands. Is $1,450 a Fair Value?

It depends, and it may be impossible to say. Some people’s data is worth more than others. For example, men’s personal data is worth more, a . According to 2020 Analysis Data from McKeeper, and from young adults (ages 18–24) are most valuable.

There has also been some research into what people would need to pay to stop using online services like search engines or social media networks – which effectively act as data vacancies. it would take more than $17,500 per year to encourage the average person to stop using Google, and more than $500 annually for them to deactivate their Facebook account.

For those who want to get out of the wild ride of Big Data completely, there isn’t much you can do. Data brokerages are operating in a largely unregulated space, and fighting back will require a lot of effort. But the main thing to know is that your data is out there, it has value, and is probably more valuable than you think. And, again, whoever has it can do almost anything they want with it without notifying you.

“Within the law, pretty much anyone can do with your data,” Bennett Cyphers, a staff technologist at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, recently said. fast company, “And they don’t have to tell anyone about it.”

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