Print Download PDF Embed

News Release

Three New Reports on Personal Data Focus on Trust, Privacy and Framework

Lucy Jay-Kennedy, Senior Media Manager, Public Engagement Department, +1 917 209 9483,

New York, USA 13 May 2014 – The World Economic Forum has released three new reports on strengthening trust, transparency and privacy in personal data usage. The reports are part of the Rethinking Personal Data initiative, which was launched in 2010.

“We need a more focused and evidence-based dialogue on personal data that addresses both the aspirations for and anxieties over how it is being used,” said Alan Marcus, Senior Director, Head of Information Technology and Telecommunications Industries, at the World Economic Forum USA.

Rethinking Personal Data: A New Lens for Strengthening Trust, prepared in collaboration with A.T. Kearney, looks at how to enhance transparency and accountability in the use of personal data. It argues that a user-centred approach is the best way of achieving this. Individuals must have more of a say in how their data is used and should be able to use the data for their own purposes.

“In order to build a truly sustainable personal data economy, regaining the trust of individuals over the use of their data is imperative,” said Naveen Menon, Partner and APAC Head of Communications, Media, and Technology at A.T. Kearney.  “This means finding new ways to connect and provide them with choices that enable them to return to a sense of control over data usage.”

Supporting this analysis are two quantitative studies that look at the issues of trust, privacy and framework through the eyes of users. Rethinking Personal Data: Trust and Context in User-Centred Data Ecosystems, an empirical study across different countries, examines the importance of context-aware data usage and how it impacts trust.

The Internet Trust Bubble: Global Values, Beliefs and Practices uses the results from a survey of 16,000 respondents to assess the attitudes and behaviour of internet users globally. It shows that individuals are on the whole positive about the opportunities offered by the internet, particularly related to freedom of expression. However, the report highlights concerns over privacy, surveillance and security. 

The Rethinking Personal Data initiative brings together private companies, public sector representatives, end-user privacy and rights groups, academics and topic experts to examine how to create a principled, collaborative and balanced personal-data ecosystem. Executives from AT&T, A.T. Kearney, Kaiser Permanente, Microsoft, Telefonica, VimpelCom and Visa are on its steering board.

Notes to Editors

The following reports are also part of the Rethinking Personal Data initiative:

View the best pictures from the Forum on Flickr at
Watch live webcasts of sessions at  
Watch the sessions on demand on YouTube at
Become a fan of the Forum on Facebook at
Follow the Forum on Twitter at and (hashtag #WEF)
Read the Forum:Blog at
Follow the Forum on Google+ at

The World Economic Forum is an international institution committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation in the spirit of global citizenship. It engages with business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.

Incorporated as a not-for-profit foundation in 1971 and headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Forum is independent, impartial and not tied to any interests. It cooperates closely with all leading international organizations (

Related Issues

Rethinking Personal Data