A new data infrastructure for personal data exchanges

Privacy could be unworkable.

One of the paradoxes of a privacy-preserving data exchange is that users can be private to the point that the exchange is unworkable. The analogy goes like this: think of your HAT as a private cabin in the woods. You get your privacy, but if you do not have a way of communicating with others, no one will know that you have bins to empty, or need logs or fuel to warm the cabin, or even if you wish to talk to someone. You are private, but that privacy has cut you off from the rest of the world. And no wi-fi either. You are truly. Very. Private.

With today's Internet, of course, you are not at all private, as someone is always watching you and you are never in your own private cabin. When you sign up for an Internet service, they create an account for you, which is like giving you a little space in their common room, usually with a camera installed! Sometimes your landlord even knows what you want before you even want it. You are. Not. Private.

Privacy and Anonymity

Some people think that the solution might be anonymity. So you get to sit in the corner of someone's common room, but you can mask yourself. Sometimes, that could work. But anonymity generates a whole host of other problems because when you think you're anonymous, you have an incentive to behave badly. We think there is a different way. One where you can be private, but not anonymous. Much like the way we are in physical life.

Privacy AND Internet Services

To create a world where you can have privacy and Internet services, we have to create specialist software to retrieve and share your HAT data in a way that ensures privacy. To use the analogy, it means someone checking in with you at your cabin and asking if you have any items to share or give away, and to whom. It's like a concierge service that runs to all the cabins in the woods (the HATs), passes messages (data) to the right people from the right people according to instructions, and also collects other messages (data) to give to organisations, if you wish. And the concierge service makes sure that the data is completely encrypted, private, and that he, the concierge, does not benefit from looking at the messages at all. In other words, to operate the HAT ecosystem, HATDeX has to create new ways of exchanging data, incentivising sharing but with no peeking, and make them the defacto standard for all HAT providers and services so that everyone can benefit. HATDeX services are therefore set up to do just that. We create these services so that our HAT Application Providers can use the exchange to build a whole range of new services: from really simple services based on calendar, notes and messaging, to really complex but awesome Internet services around your data, such as bots and artificial intelligence, whilst always conforming to these new privacy-preserving data exchange standards on the HAT ecosystem.

The next phase of the Internet

We do this not because we want to rebuild the Internet, but because we think that with even more devices connected to the Internet, this new way of exchanging data will help dispel fears, rebuild trust, create better services and help the digital economy to grow. We like to think that we are building the next phase of the Internet.

Implementing new processes and standards for privacy preserving data exchange

Our services run on 4 platforms. [table id=12 /]

UncategorisedIrene NgBlog