Technology gleaning our Online Secrets

The Growing Data Analytics industry mines computers to track our thoughts

Publicity stunts were an almost daily occurrence during the referendum campaign, with each side endlessly competing to outdo the other’s behavior in a bid to capture the public’s attention and votes.

Whilst the extravagance of the campaigns will be remembered for years to come, only recently has another more targeted and subtle battleground been revealed – the fight to win over voters on line. This psychological campaign has recently been uncovered following publication of referendum spending information and public investigations. In Feb it was identified that the vote ‘Leave’ had poured 40% of its funds into Aggregate IQ, a company that specializes in targeting Facebook advertising. Companies can discover personal information from their analysis of Twitter and Facebook. So for the first time ever people are going to start receiving targeted information on the products and services that they can afford and care about rather than just arbitrary information, It will be person focused and targeted specifically from information gleaned about you through social media.

One of the leading companies in this area is the IBM machine ‘Watson’ which is a profiling expert. ‘Watson’ is allowing organisations to understand what their consumers’ emotional triggers are. This then allows marketeers to target their customer. An example of ‘Watson’ being used is in the USA where recently an insurance company used it to determine which of it’s customers would be likely to appreciate warnings ahead of severe storms, prompting them to put their car in the garage. It was not only able to select which customer, but also the way in which that customer would prefer to be contacted. It resulted in bringing down claims.

The behavioral analytics industry maybe secretive and fledgling, but it has already shown signs that it will rapidly grow. It is predicted that 75% of all consumers will interact with cognitive computing by 2018!

Food for thought – even if we cannot predict exactly what food as yet.

The Daily Telegraph 20th March 2017 – extracts taken from article by Cara McGoogan