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World’s first personal data store launched

Posted on: Monday 11th of October 2010

A small but significant step was announced on October 11, Mydex has launched a new project to introduce a step change in the relationship between individuals and the organisations they deal with – the first ever operational Personal Data Store service. This is a significant new development that starts to restore to individuals control over the management and sharing of their online personal data.

The Mydex Community Prototype provides individuals with the tools to enable them to store and manage their personal details, to have them externally verified, and, at their discretion, to share them with external organisations.

There is an impressive set of participants trialling the service. They include the Department for Work and Pensions, London Borough of Brent, London Borough of Croydon, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, and the social network Netmums. External verification is provided by Experian. Additional recruitment of individual trialists and research will be provided by YouGov.

As one of the participants, Councillor Liam Maxwell, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, said “We are delighted to take part in the first ever prototype service to give control over personal data back to citizens: where it belongs. We think it will save citizens time, reduce hassle and allow for more accurate data to flow between the council, other organisations and people themselves. It is an important first step in this tax-cutting council’s strategy to deliver better services for less cost – and to make government work for the people not the other way round” .

Ctrl-Shift is taking part in the project as an observer (and for a full list of participants click here). We’ll be picking up the lessons from the project as they emerge. But let’s be clear… this is a massive step. Empowering individuals to manage their own personal data unlocks considerable benefits for everyone. For individuals it offers greater convenience, more control, richer more complete data, and allows better decision making. For businesses and public services it means the chance to reduce costs and create value by improving their ability to offer relevant, personalised services. It’s a far cry from today’s organisation centric model.