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Startup Watch: DuckDuckGo

Written by Sean McCloskey
Posted May 24, 2021

I still remember as a kid asking my dad how much he earned in a year. 

That did not go over well, and it was the first of many lessons I learned regarding what personal information (data) is OK to share versus what personal information should be kept private.

Obviously, the memory has stuck with me. And I bring it up today because it directs me to our discussion and opportunity for June.

It all revolves around your data and the various ways folks are trying to access it, corrupt it, or monetize it. The company I will reveal today will show us how we can protect personal data and, most importantly, make some cash off this growing industry.

Privacy Is an Age-Old Issue

Data privacy has been around for ages in one form or another. As long as folks have been locking documents in desk drawers, trunks, and safety deposit boxes, data privacy has been an industry.

The need for data privacy is greater than ever. Not only are there more pieces of data on us than ever before, but this data is also now digital and a lot less protected than most realize.

And as more and more of our data gets digitized and we share more and more information online, protecting this data will become a wildly important industry.

But as daunting as it sounds, it’s not all bad news. There are plenty of good reasons to allow instant access to our data.

Big Data Is Changing the Face of Health Care

Easy access to shared data is having a remarkably positive impact on health care. The ability to communicate health data is really the only way to maximize the potential of our healthcare systems. 

Quick and easy access to a patient’s health information and related data is not as uncommon as we think. 

The American Hospital Association notes in a detailed report:

We carry detailed personal records and information with us everywhere, embedded in smart chips in our cars, credit cards, and mobile phones… As national hospital associations, we are united in our conviction that it is time to finish the job and grant all patients the peace of mind that comes from knowing that their healthcare decisions are based on the best and most complete information possible.

However, the report also notes there are significant needs to increase the security of this data as well:

While we have made much progress, at present, we have the incomplete outline of a national data-sharing system in place, one that lacks the agreed-upon rules of the road, conformance, technical standards, and standardized implementations to ensure that all HIE platforms can communicate correctly with each other. The movement toward true, national interoperability has been underway for some time. 

Put simply, if you happen to be on vacation abroad or even out of state and fall ill, you’ll be thankful the doctors taking care of you will be able to quickly access your medical records in order to safely administer treatment according to your specific health needs.

However, developing these systems takes huge amounts of capital investment.

In fact, MarketsandMarkets reports the global healthcare analytics market was estimated to be valued at $14 billion in 2019. Furthermore, this market is projected to grow at a rate of 28.3% annually, reaching a value of $50.5 billion by 2024. 

That’s just the beginning of how valuable the data industry is becoming.

Big Data Is BIG BUSINESS (and Worth Billions)

Big data refers to the kind of data sets that are too large for traditional data processing applications. 

According to the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), big data is defined as having one or some of the following characteristics: high volume, high velocity, or high variety. This means things like the information garnered from mobile data traffic and cloud computing traffic as well as technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IoT) all contribute to the increasing volume and complexity of big data.

Put simply, your age, name, phone number, address, Social Security number, GPS location, date of birth, and a few other million pieces of information are circulating in cyberspace every day, 24 hours a day, and are all part of what we call big data. 

And this data is very valuable.

According to Statista, "The global big data market is forecast to grow to $103 billion by 2027, more than double its expected market size in 2018. With a share of 45%, the software segment would become the large big data market segment by 2027."

Big Data Industry Growth

Source: Statista

DuckDuckGo is a new search engine now widely available for download that sets a new standard of trust and transparency when browsing online. Its app and browser extension stop you from being tracked so you can browse online with peace of mind. Additionally, the company has a tracker-free search engine so Google and Microsoft won’t know everything about you in an instant. 

And if all this is too overwhelming, the company offers tips and tutorials to help you protect your data.

Currently, the company has seen over 1.8 billion unique web searches via its browser and has received nearly $2 million in privacy donations to facilitate its operations.

Now, this company is a private startup, but if one day it decides to IPO or you have the means to participate in any series funding, this is one company that really piques our interest.

To your wealth,

Sean McCloskey
Editor, Energy and Capital

follow basic@TheRL_McCloskey on Twitter

After spending 10 years in the consumer tech reporting and educational publishing industries, Sean has since redevoted himself to one of his original passions: identifying and cashing in on the most lucrative opportunities the market has to offer. As the former managing editor of multiple investment newsletters, he's covered virtually every sector of the market, ranging from energy and tech to gold and cannabis. Over the years, Sean has offered his followers the chance to score numerous triple-digit gains, and today he continues his mission to deliver followers the best chance to score big wins on Wall Street and beyond as an editor for Energy and Capital.

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