This Week in Data – March 22

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Data exchange market set to explode

You’ll forgive us if we’re just a little bit excited about this one. A new report from has found data exchange platforms are set to experience a period of massive growth. Sure, there are challenges – proper valuation of data is one. But overall, this report says, services (like Data Republic) will help create innovation through developing third-party applications, among other uses like cloud availability. Sounds good to us!


“The global data exchange platform services market can be segmented based on deployment type, end-use industry, and region…The cloud segment is expected [to] expand during the forecast period owing to its advantages such as data motion support, disaster recovery, no hardware costs, automatic updates, and high availability over on-premise deployed data exchange platform services.”


The OpenTable app ain’t so open

In an age of open data and with such an emphasis on sharing, it’s good to remember that data is a competitive asset – and many companies will be hesitant to get rid of it. So it was with OpenTable, the restaurant app. The app banned restaurants from sharing information with other providers. They say it was to protect user privacy, but restaurants kicked up a fuss – now they can share, but only with a fee. It’s a hard one for restaurants. They need to stay competitive…but the platforms they rely on don’t want to share information. Watch this space.


“The ability to mine and analyze consumer data to target loyal guests and attract new ones is one of the few ways restaurants can differentiate themselves in a bloated and competitive space. This is quite a paradox, as it is becoming a competitive necessity for restaurants to have that data at a time when aggregates are taking control of that data instead.”


Australian data standards causing problems

Eek. With so much progress being made in Australia on data sharing, standards and governance, it’s inevitable there will be backlash. According to Which-50, some organizations have pointed out new government data sharing processes could lead to inadvertently identifying people in marginalized or vulnerable situations – like domestic violence victims. That’s because the new systems emphasise sharing information than the controls around the actual information being shared. The systems are chronicled in an Australian Computer Society whitepaper…but critics now say the paper doesn’t go far enough and that it doesn’t investigate risk management in detail. Given the Government has suffered some critical data setbacks in recent years, this isn’t a good start.


“Dr Bernard Robertson-Dunn, the Australian Privacy Foundation’s Health Committee Chair, says appropriate risk management is conspicuously absent from the ACS whitepaper which takes a “technology up” approach, without enough consideration for responsibility, consequential costs, and reporting frameworks.”


Aussie sharing frameworks now detailed

Speaking of the government being allowed to share information, the Federal Government has released new principles for federal agencies and data sharing. The only problem is, these are stop-gap measures and don’t carry the weight of law. Still, they make sense: data should only be shared for an appropriate purpose with a public benefit, with users who have appropriate authority, and with appropriate and proportionate protections. With a federal election coming up, let’s see if these rules withstand a possible change of government.


“The proposed bill will enshrine the role of the National Data Commissioner, and authorise data sharing and release for specified purposes, such as informing and assessing government policy and research and development with public benefits.”


Texas bureaucrat takes the blame for data sharing scandal

Woops. The Texas head of the Department of Public Safety has admitted responsibility for a mishap that saw tens of thousands of citizens hounded by the government to prove their citizenship – even after they’d already done so. At the heart of the issue is an outdated data process. Just another example of why governance is so important – it solves problems before they happen.


“In unusual tongue-lashings of the DPS, Abbott also said the agency treated the secretary of state’s request for data the same way it has handled the production of driver’s licenses to Texans. The department’s responsibility for driver’s licenses, which Hearn oversees, has been a sore spot for the agency for years, with many Texans waiting hours in line to receive their documentation.”


That’s our wrap for this week. Thanks for reading – we hope you found it entertaining and informational. We’d love to hear your thoughts on these articles and anything else data related! Email us anytime at!

Until next week,

Team Data Republic

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