Aug 19, 2020

Five myths of data mining

Technology
Data Mining
Kayleigh Shooter
2 min
wires
Many myths surround data mining, but do not fall victim to them, we take a look at some of them below...

 Data mining is an analytics tool that allows executives to predict the future of customer behaviour. The results from data mining can be utilised to increase revenue, identify new business ventures and offer a new competitive edge. Myths have developed around the subject because people are confused about what it is. 

The way that companies are vastly adopting data mining can easily dispel the below myths, most businesses have realised that its benefits outweigh the myths and drawbacks.

The first myth is that data mining provides instant predictions, however this is not true because data mining is a multi-step process, successful data mining requires accurate data which takes time. 

The next data mining myth is that it is not yet viable for business application and this is untrue as it has already been shown that the technology is viable and businesses have already highly prized it for successful results. People normally talk about this myth because they have not yet adapted data mining and just want to come up with a reason why they have not done so yet.

The third myth is data mining requires three separate, dedicated databases, many people think that you need an expensive and dedicated database when you do not. Data mining requires an enterprise wide data warehouse which costs much less to run than separate databases.

The penultimate common myth is that you require a Ph.D to carry out data mining, many people view it as complex when it is not. It is in fact a collaborative effort from many different people with many different skills. However each person should be knowledgeable in one of three areas; statistics or quantitative methods, business and customers, and computer science.

The final myth is that data mining is solely for large companies with a lot of customer data whereas it can be used by a business of any size that has relevant data which reflects the business and its customers. 

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Jun 15, 2021

China Takes Additional Step to Control Big Tech’s Data

Data
China
Technology
Legal
Elise Leise
3 min
The Chinese government wants big tech companies like Tencent and Tiktok to hand over their immense stores of user information ─ and they’ll force it by law

China’s new Data Security Law will take effect on September 1st, allowing the government major control over the collection, use, and transmission of data. Tech companies have grown exponentially in terms of market size and overall power, and the Chinese government has no interest in alternative power hubs—especially those that belong to private enterprise. 

 

With its Thursday legislation, companies will face extravagant fines if they export data outside of China without authorisation. The Chinese government claims that this will create a legal framework and help companies from taking advantage of citizens, but according to analyst Ryan Fedasiuk from Georgetown University’s Centre for Security and Emerging Technology, “China’s push for data privacy...is yet another move to strengthen the role of the government and the party vis-à-vis tech companies.”

 

How Do Other Countries Approach Data Privacy? 

 

  • Europe: The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights assures EU citizens the right to data protection. The bloc’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), passed in May of 2018, put stringent restrictions on commercial data collection. 
  • Canada: 28 federal, provincial, and territorial laws govern consumer data privacy; DLA Piper ranks the country’s data protection legislation as heavy, in comparison to Russia (medium) and India (limited). 
  • The United States: As usual, the States doesn’t have a single comprehensive federal law for data privacy. Instead, its lawmakers have passed hundreds of local and state acts, many of which are seen by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)

 

China, in contrast, thinks data should be a national asset and has written data collection into its five-year plan. Although its new legislation will help curtail private access to consumer data, the government may be the final beneficiary. 

 

What Will China Do With the Data? 

According to advisors, consumer data can mitigate financial crises and viral outbreaks. It can protect the interest of national security—no surprise—and help the government with criminal surveillance. Right now, Chinese regulators have summoned 13 major tech firms, including Tencent, JD.com, Meituan, and ByteDance, to meet with China’s central bank. Communist Party Chief President Xi Jinping can shut down any companies found violating the new privacy laws, as well as hit them with a fine of up to 10 million yuan—US$1.6mn

 

How Will Laws Affect Foreign Firms? 

Now, foreign firms must store data on Chinese soil, a practice that many companies protest will infringe on their proprietary data. So far, Tesla will comply: in late May, the electric car manufacturer promised to build more Chinese factories and keep the resulting information within Chinese borders. In fact, businesses hoping to start China-based businesses—such as Citigroup and BlackRock—will have to comply with the “data-localisation laws”. 

 

The Chinese government has framed data as a critical source of intelligence for the party and central government. “You have the most sufficient data, then you can make the most objective and accurate analyses”, Mr Xi told Tencent’s founder, Mr Ma. “The...suggestions to the government in this regard are very valuable”. 

 

Greater digital control is coming, that’s for sure. Mr Xi has named big data as an essential part of China’s economy, right up there with land and labour. “Whoever controls data will have the initiative”. 

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