Data Broker

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What Is The Role of Data Brokers?

As we all become increasingly reliant on technology, our personal data is being collected and shared at an unprecedented rate. Much of this data is collected without our knowledge or consent, and it is often sold to third parties without our understanding or control.

Data brokers are companies that collect and sell personal data. They are sometimes also referred to as information resellers, marketing database providers, or simply “data sellers.” Data brokers typically collect data from a variety of sources, including public records, web scraping, loyalty programs, consumer surveys, and more. This data is then packaged and sold to marketers, insurers, employers, landlords, and other third parties.

While some data brokers operate in a completely transparent manner, others are more secretive about their activities. Some have even been known to engage in questionable practices, such as selling sensitive personal information (including health information) without the individual’s knowledge or consent.

The role of data brokers has come under increased scrutiny in recent years as concerns about privacy and the misuse of personal data have grown. In response to these concerns, some data brokers have begun offering consumers more control over their personal data. However, many still operate without any regulation or oversight.

How Companies Collect Personal Data?

Most companies collect personal data from their customers in a variety of ways. Some common methods include:

  • Collecting data directly from customers when they make a purchase or sign up for a service:

This information may include names, addresses, credit card numbers, and other personal identifying information.

  • Purchasing data from third-party data brokers:

These companies buy and sell information on millions of consumers, often without their knowledge or consent. The information may include names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, purchasing habits, and much more.

  • Gathering data from public records:

This includes information like birth and death certificates, marriage and divorce filings, property records, and more.

  • Getting data from social media and other online sources:

This can include everything from someone’s Facebook profile to the contents of their email inboxes.

In most cases, the personal data that companies collect is used for marketing purposes – to target ads and promotions to specific groups of people based on their demographics, interests, or behavior. However, this is not always the case. Personal data can also be used for fraud prevention, credit scoring, insurance underwriting, employment background checks, and other purposes.

What Do Data Brokers Do?

Data brokers are companies that collect, process, and sell personal data. They are a key part of the data ecosystem, providing the raw material that fuels the digital economy.

Data brokers operate in a variety of ways. Some collect data directly from consumers, often through online surveys or sign-ups for free products and services. Others purchase data from other companies, such as credit bureaus or retailers. Still others compile data from public sources, such as property records or voter rolls.

Once they have gathered this information, data brokers typically sort and package it into tidy databases that can be easily bought and sold. They may also enrich the data with additional information gleaned from other sources, such as social media profiles or consumer behavior patterns.

The end users of these databases are often marketers, advertisers, and other businesses that use the information to target consumers with ads and other communications. Data brokers also sell to insurers, landlords, employers, and law enforcement agencies, among others.

Overall, data brokers serve as middlemen between the providers of data and those who use it for various purposes. While their role in the data ecosystem is controversial, they have become increasingly important with the rise of digital technology and big data analytics.

What Are Common Uses for Data Broker Services?

Data broker services are commonly used for a variety of marketing and research purposes. Data brokers collect, process, and sell information about consumers that is gathered from a variety of sources, including public records, social media, and online activity. This information is then used to create detailed profiles of consumers that can be used for marketing or research purposes.

Data broker services can be used to target specific audiences with advertising, create customized marketing content, and track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. Data brokers can also provide insights into consumer behavior, helping businesses better understand their customers.

Additionally, data broker services can be used to screen job candidates, monitor employee performance, and prevent fraud.

In recent years, data broker services have come under scrutiny for their lack of transparency and potential for privacy violations. As a result, the industry has adopted some measures to increase accountability, such as offering consumers the right to opt out and providing access to their personal information upon request.

What Are Pros and Cons of Different Business Models?

There are a few different business models that data brokers use to make money off of personal data. Some common ones are subscription fees, advertising, and licensing data to third parties. Here are some pros and cons of each:

Subscription Fees:

  • Pros:

This is a more stable revenue model for data brokers since they don’t have to rely on advertising dollars or one-off licensing deals.

  • Cons:

Users may be less likely to sign up for a service if they have to pay for it, especially if there are free alternatives available.


-Pros: This can be a very lucrative business model if done right. Data brokers can charge advertisers a premium for access to their users’ data.

-Cons: There is always the risk that users will get tired of seeing ads and leave the service. Brokers also need to be careful not to violate users’ privacy by showing them ads that are too targeted.

Licensing Data to Third Parties:

  • Pros:

This can be a big money maker for data brokers if they have high quality data that is in demand.

  • Cons:

There is always the risk that the data will be leaked or used in ways that the users didn’t intend. Brokers need to be very careful about who they license their data to and make sure there are strict contracts in place.

Overall, each business model has advantages and disadvantages. Data brokers need to weigh the pros and cons of each carefully in order to determine which will be the most successful for their company.

What Are The Latest Regulatory Changes Impacting The Use Of Personal Data By Data Brokers?

Data brokers, which are also known as information resellers, are companies that collect personal data from a variety of sources and then sell it to other companies for marketing or other purposes. While data brokers have long been a part of the business landscape, they have come under increased scrutiny in recent years due to changing attitudes about privacy and the use of personal data.

As a result of this scrutiny, a number of regulatory changes have been made that impact the way data brokers can collect and use personal data. These changes include the following:

  • The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect in May 2018 and introduced strict new rules about how personal data can be collected, used, and shared. Among other things, the GDPR requires companies to get explicit consent from individuals before collecting or using their personal data.
  • The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) was passed in 2018 and went into effect in 2020. It includes many of the same provisions as the GDPR, but is specific to California.
  • A number of US states have passed laws that prohibit businesses from selling individuals’ personal information without their consent. These laws vary from state to state, but generally require businesses to give individuals the opportunity to opt out of having their data sold.

These regulatory changes have had a significant impact on the way data brokers operate. In response to the GDPR, many data brokers stopped collecting personal data from European sources. And while the CCPA has


Personal data has become a vital commodity in the modern world and it’s important to understand how these brokers operate. Data brokers are gatekeepers to personal information, but it’s worth exploring whether their activities provide enough consumer protection or if more should be done to ensure that our sensitive information is used responsibly. Hopefully, this article has given you a better understanding of what role data brokers play, arming you with the knowledge to make informed decisions when managing your own online footprint.

Hello everyone ! I am the creator and webmaster of website . Specialized in Technology Intelligence and Innovation ( Master 1 Diploma in Information and Systems Science from the University of Aix-Marseille, France ), I write tutorials allowing you to discover or take control of the tools of ICT or Technological Intelligence . The purpose of these articles is therefore to help you better search, analyze ( verify ), sort and store public and legal information . Indeed, we cannot make good decisions without having good information !

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