For $150, Most Users Will Sell Personal Information to Brands

For $150, Most Users Will Sell Personal Information to Brands

Everyone has a price when it comes to sharing data

People are becoming uncomfortable with brands selling their data, but interestingly, it seems some are willing to shell out their personal information if the price is right.

Syzygy surveyed 3,000 internet users across the UK, US and Germany in May and found that the average amount of money people were willing to take from their favorite brand in exchange for their personal data was $150. Meanwhile, one-third of US respondents said they’d be fine with Google monitoring and tracking their activity across all of their digital devices in exchange for $25.

Between the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica controversy and the recent enforcement of the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which stipulates that EU users’ data can only be used if they give a company explicit permission, people are becoming more aware of how much digital advertisers value their personal information. Some apps even exist for the sole purpose of helping users make money by selling their data to marketers. But assigning a precise dollar amount to this data is very tricky.

There have been news stories of people selling their data for $384, while others will hand away their information for $8 a month. The range of prices that people are willing to sell their data for is so wide that it can vary from a few cents to over $1,000.

Of course, the compensation that people seek for their data depends on the type of data they're selling. Syzygy specifically asked users about their willingness to sell data that Facebook and Google already collect.

Experian estimates that credit card and passport information can sell for hundreds, even thousands, of dollars on the dark web. Meanwhile, driver's license information sells for just $20.

About half of the US users Syzygy surveyed said they would not sell their personal data at any price. But the survey's results indicate that while people may be getting more fed up with careless approaches to data security, many aren’t above taking some cash to ease their worries.

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