How Too Much Data Could Spell Trouble for Consumers

June 01, 2017
By: Larry Alton

For most intents and purposes, data is a good thing. Having more information about the world around us helps scientists and engineers solve bigger problems, it gives us more accurate and thorough projections of everything from weather patterns to stock market fluctuations, and can even improve both our safety and our standards of living.

However, the overabundance of consumer data could ultimately be problematic for consumers.

The Problem with Too Much Data

These are just some of the problems that may arise with the availability of inordinate amounts of data:

Is There a Line?

If there is such a thing as “too much” data, then how much is too much? By 2025, we’re projected to create more than 180 zettabytes—180 trillion gigabytes—annually. By comparison, we’re barely creating 10 zettabytes annually now. So where do we draw the line, if we draw one at all?

Though there are problems associated with an overabundance of data, there are too many advantages to try and stifle the development of better data analysis tools (and more data in general). Instead, we need to work with data engineers to address these concerns proactively, and as consumers, be aware that these problems exist. The more you know about the world of big data, the less susceptible you’ll be to these potential issues. 

Edited by Alicia Young