Here's a new thing to worry about, although I'm not sure how prevalent it is... Opposed to the tradition of hacking into someone's databases, a new kind of data piracy involves capturing interactions between brands and their customers in real time. The more data we collect about our customers, especially on mobile devices, the more we have to worry about this.
AdExchanger: Brand Privacy: Who’s Knocking Off Your Consumer Data? 2018-Jun-13 by Mark Shedletsky of Vertical Mass
Brands spend billions of dollars to cultivate one-to-one relationships with consumers and create audience profiles in exchange for discounts and other rewards. There’s a give and take here, with a direct relationship between the data provided with consent and the benefit received.
Where things have run afoul, however, is the gaggle of third parties accessing and using that data without permission. Data companies gain access to publisher and brand audiences through mobile analytics SDKs, social media scraping, programmatic ad serving and more.
Apps may want access to the microphone or the location of our device when it seems irrelevant to the casual game being played or the service being downloaded. It’s likely to aid in the piracy of a consent-based relationship between a consumer and a brand. For instance, microphones may get deployed to help ad tech platforms identify audience signals in your living room and sell retargeting.
These kinds of practices have created a growing need for a transparency framework, as the IAB has recently introduced, that audits where data comes from and helps media buyers trust what they’re getting and from whom they’re getting it. It’s a potential fix for a universal intellectual property issue that’s at the crux of the need for greater brand privacy.