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Privacy Social Networks Australia The Almighty Buck Technology

Aussie Bank Wants To Trade Social Network Data For Better Deals 68

Posted by timothy
from the free-implanted-heads-up-display dept.
natecochrane writes "An Australian bank has raised the possibility of offering better deals to customers who share its social network activities with it. But at the same security conference at which Commonwealth Bank's CIO made the suggestion, another speaker, security guru Bruce Schneier, warned of the dangers of vendor lock-in. Would you trust your bank — or any institution — to be the gatekeeper for your private data and thoughts in return for a cheaper mortgage or percentage points off your credit card?"
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Aussie Bank Wants To Trade Social Network Data For Better Deals

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Everyone who currently makes advertising money off my personal data doesn't share it with me. This way I'd at least be getting something.

  • it's not like the bank can start doing real profit from that too much.

    sounds like gimmick marketing towards younger folk. customers should ask for the same deals without it or threaten to switch banks.

    • by marcosdumay (620877) <marcosdumay AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:08AM (#38059104) Homepage Journal

      Probably the banks already offer better discounts for people that use credit in a sane way, or have anything to lose in a bankrupcy. It is a different kind of market, and those people probably won't want this smaller discount.

      Anyway, gimmick marketing toward young people is very important for companies that have a long term relationship with clients (like banks). We are seeing an example of banks being smart the right way (instead of being dumb managers and smartly stealing from governments to compensate). That is a nice change of tone.

    • by gx5000 (863863)
      Really ? Our info is worth quite a lot in numbers to marketers and speculators... Now they would get not only your worth and banking habits but the rest of your activities as well... Not good.
    • FTA I think it's more than just gimmick - the banks see amazon/ebay/paypal encroaching on banking turf, so the bank is trying to expand into web portal turf to compete.

      And whether its banking turf or web turf, we customers are the turf they battle on, and whatever remaining wealth we may have is what they battle for.

    • by mjwx (966435)

      it's not like the bank can start doing real profit from that too much.

      sounds like gimmick marketing towards younger folk. customers should ask for the same deals without it or threaten to switch banks.

      Actually, you can profit from personal data quite a bit. You sell it to marketing companies who sell the analysed results of that data to the companies who sell products which can be specifically targetted at such individuals. Seeing as you know who they are and how to contact them, that data is quite valuable.

      Now under Australian law, banks are not permitted to do anything untoward with personal data. They have your credit card records, everything you bought, where you shop frequently and so forth. A sm

  • Happily (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Walterk (124748) <dublet@[ ].org ['acm' in gap]> on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:00AM (#38059014) Homepage Journal

    Considering my facebook account is empty - and purposefully so - yes, I would happily share additional lack of information for a better deal.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Since when have people EVER cared in the slightest bit about what happens to their private data?

    Just look at the millions of sheep posting the minutia of their lives on Facebook, letting their friends network be sold by other people to who knows who, letting their every move on the net be sliced, diced, analyzed and sold to _anyone_.

    People don't care. They'll jump all over this if it'll save them five dollars. Hell, they will probably do it for free, just because their friends do it. People follow the pa

  • by 0100010001010011 (652467) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:06AM (#38059082)

    As long as they can deal with the fact that I'm a 90 year old female that lives in 90210.

    Oh, you mean we have to tell the truth? Somewhere there is an entire branch of statistics dedicated to throwing away the mandatory answers I give to some websites.

    • by gx5000 (863863)
      Well you don't want them assuming you're dying and closing your account on you do you... Or sending a few hawks to try and sell you on a reverse mortgage... Man, humanity hath no mercy or shame.
    • by epine (68316)

      As long as they can deal with the fact that I'm a 90 year old female that lives in 90210.

      That's precisely what they want to know. Giving a different answer on every web form lowers your learned-helplessness score to almost zero. They won't want your business. You might not blindly pay charges you don't understand for services you didn't know you needed.

      These bonuses are the banking equivalent of free drinks at Vegas. No one drinks free who isn't losing far more than the drinks are worth.

      You think the sm

      • Then how is it that the credit card companies have convinced retailers not to discount cash? People who pay cash miss out on all the great CC swag.

        Contractual strong arming. The CC companies just won't deal with retailers who offer cash discounts. Most of the time, though, if you can talk to a real decision maker like the owner or an actual manager, you can ask for and receive a cash discount.

        • Re:Of course! (Score:4, Insightful)

          by w_dragon (1802458) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:44AM (#38059480)
          If you're getting more than a 3% discount it's probably because they aren't planning on paying taxes on your purchase, not because they can skip the CC fee. Visa and MasterCard are in the 2.5-3% range mostly, Amex is a fair bit higher. Plus deposit fees plus the time you have to pay employees to balance the cash in tills aren't free.
          • If you're getting more than a 3% discount it's probably because they aren't planning on paying taxes on your purchase, not because they can skip the CC fee. Visa and MasterCard are in the 2.5-3% range mostly, Amex is a fair bit higher. Plus deposit fees plus the time you have to pay employees to balance the cash in tills aren't free.

            That's also a possibility. I paid a tow-truck driver in cash once, and that's exactly what he said.

            One reason that CC companies can charge n% is that cash does have a tendency to grow legs and walk away. When you're dealing with the owner of the business that's not a problem, but he could be under-reporting to the tax men.

            Aside from fraud, the owner might take cash because he can use it to pay his bills, *right now*. Checks take a few days, but CC transactions take longer and are subject to recal

      • by PPH (736903)

        That's precisely what they want to know. Giving a different answer on every web form lowers your learned-helplessness score to almost zero. They won't want your business. You might not blindly pay charges you don't understand for services you didn't know you needed.

        I see a business model emerging to set up and maintain phoney on-line personnas. Respectable ones, with Photoshopped pics of you shaking hands with Nelson Mandella, stories about your work with World Vision and your numerous contacts in the corporate/finance world.

        This has been done (manually) for years by some motivated people. But it took time and money. Now that our lives are all on line, break a few CAPTCHAs, automate the process, ????, and profit! You don't even have to leave the comfort of your mom'

      • by Talderas (1212466)

        That's precisely what they want to know. Giving a different answer on every web form lowers your learned-helplessness score to almost zero. They won't want your business. You might not blindly pay charges you don't understand for services you didn't know you needed.

        Interestingly enough, that's the exact same reasoning why neither prosecuting or defending attorneys want a juror that even hints at the phrase of jury nullification. The prosecutors don't want you because it's harder to get a conviction. The defense doesn't want you because you just demonstrated intelligence and won't be easily swayed by weak arguments.

    • by Darinbob (1142669)

      But don't they know this basic info already? Don't people still have to apply for bank accounts in person? Or are some able to apply to a major bank without ever needing to show proof of identity, address, contact info, beneficiary, etc?

  • cheaper mortgage

    If you have applied for a mortgage (at least with any bank I've ever done it with), they know a *lot* more than who your Facebook friends are. Most of my social stuff isn't secret anyway. Compare that to the fine-toothed comb they went through my credit history with, and I'm pretty sure I would take this deal.

    • by gx5000 (863863)
      You're going to need that time machine, better improve the specs ! ;-)
    • by wzzzzrd (886091)

      I built a time machine that can take me two days into the future in only 48 hours. Its applications are somewhat limited

      Dimitri Martin's version is funnier ;)

      • by elrous0 (869638) *

        And Stephen Wright's is even funnier than that.

        • by wzzzzrd (886091)
          I really doubt that. Did he had unnecessary bells? If so, did he love them?

          Explaining a joke while making it ("Its applications are somewhat limited") kills all the funny.

          Funnier != Older
  • by necro81 (917438) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:11AM (#38059134) Journal
    Is it really all that different to the implicit arrangement we have now: credit card companies and banks mining our purchasing habits to sell to advertisers? Or what facebook, advertisers, and every online presence with a "Like" button does? If anyone is worried about vendor lock in, they should have already abandoned Facebook and the like. Uprooting and changing banks is not nearly as difficult as, say, migrating email addresses, let alone going to a different social network (even if such a thing were possible).
  • There's nothing I put out there, on a blog, comment Facebook, or even (especially) Twitter, that I'd consider to be private information. The stuff I had to reveal to get approved for my mortgage, however, that was private information. See the difference?

  • Create a fake site on facebook and give that to these idiots.
    • I've only got one Facebook account, and I don't use it very often. But I've got multiple Twitter accounts - one's named something like "dontfollowme", because some newspaper insisted on using Twitter logins for comments. If a bank really wants low-quality Facebook data, they'll find I have no friends, but I'm a fan of several random not-currently-produced TV programs or brands of cheese or something.

  • If my bank would suggest something like that, the best deal would be another bank.
  • What is to stop you from just creating a new ID to give the bank, that you fill with pictures of puppies, and beige Corollas?

    I, like most of my friends are more mature now, but as a younger man I would have made up an assumed ID to post my pics of unacceptable behavior.
    • Are you more mature because you resigned yourself to accept that some behaviors are unacceptable, or because you stopped being influenced by the opinions of the people who find them unacceptable?

      • Neither - he's gotten mature enough to decide to include the pictures of puppies and beige cars, instead of the pictures of him engaging in unacceptable behavior.

    • by AHuxley (892839)
      Depends on the Australians behind the bank.
      Alan Bond, Christopher Skase, Nugan Hand, The Dodgy Brothers, BCCI ...
  • From TFA:

    Owning such a huge chunk of an online persona - the bank will charge higher fees to those who don't accept its offer or who have money elsewhere - creates huge switching costs should the customer wish to defect.

    What company won't "leverage" this lock-in once uts established to increase prices

  • I treat these networks like I treat email. I have multiple email accounts and multiple social networks accounts. Find an email provider that provides filtering and forwarding.
    Mine are roughly divided like this; 1) Personal, close, true and trusted friends and selected family members. 2) A business account for legitimate and legal uses. One for each business. 2) Social contacts, acquaintances, blogs, SOME social media sites. 3) Throw away accounts, may or may not use a pseudonym with significantly d
  • Just create a dummy facebook/twitter/google+ account for situations like this... problem solved.

  • by swb (14022) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:45AM (#38059492)

    Why does this sound like one of those 'deals' that simply becomes a rate hike for everyone and the discount for disclosing information just puts you back at the normal price?

    Or they introduce a new fee or surcharge for not providing this info?

    Or becomes one more bogus way to manufacture fake lending risk (like driving records) -- how would you like your Facebook profile factored into your credit score?

  • How do we educate the not so tech savy population who don't really understand what they are doing by giving this information away? I think ideas like this are going to become mode widespread over time. It's bad enough all the information Facebook and Google have on me, never mind whoring it out to third parties like banks.
    • Let them be. You can't do more than try to inform them, you can't force them to listen.

      See the bright side of it. If Facebook, Google et al have enough sheep to herd, they won't want to catch us.

  • Sounds like I'll be propping up the bank with high fees as opposed to all those sad faceslap, twatter, etc.b*****s who share every piece of cr*p with the world and it's dog.

    I don't have a single "social" account, /. is the closest thing I have to social networking! If they bring this in I'll change banks, assuming it gets past all the regulations and anti-competitive restrictions.
  • Imagine all the extra excuses insurance companies could fabricate once you let them milk even more of your personal information. Will governments ever have an incentive to protect our personal information? Until they do, I expect the commercialization of personal information will continue - to the detriment of the consumer. When are people going to realize that there ain't no such thing as a free lunch, online or otherwise?
  • No problem. Lemme create an account.

    Is there some kind of activity required?

  • It's nice that they asked.

  • Step 1: Setup Fake Facebook account
    Step 2: Give bank Fake account info and get lower rate
    Step 3: Never use Fake account again.

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