Personal – A virtual vault to store and control your digital life

PersonalLast weekend we gave you a list of the must have productivity apps, here is another app that deserves a mention.

Personal gives people a digital locker for saving and securely sharing their important data and files. The locker could be accessed on the web or by its mobile app. There are several apps available in the app stores which offer password protection for stored data. But Personal goes a step ahead by letting people properly leverage their information so they can get the most value from it.

Millions of people around the world are using different password protected apps to store their passwords, credit card details and other similar personal details. And why not, you can not remember everything by yourself. Personal does the same thing as those apps but with a wider range of things that can be stored.

It securely stores all the information in tabs called ‘gems’, which have various data fields. Gems are little snippets of reusable information that represent different things in your life, they range from your lock combinations and card details to your pet’s medical details. You can easily share individual gems with your friends, family and whoever you like. The gems storing personal details could be used for auto-filling forms online.

Plus, it could be used by companies for easy data collection of its employees, by retrieving the ‘gems’ shared by them.

The Personal team prides itself on the level of security it is offering to the users. ‘Your sensitive data and all your files are encrypted while stored using 256-bit AES encryption and RSA 2048 asymmetric key encryption – the same algorithms relied on by the U.S. military, the U.S. government, and banks.’

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Now coming to what actually sets this app apart.

People are sharing tonnes of data online everyday. And many companies are using that data to make money. They don’t need to pay for the concerned information because they are getting it for free. The app developers are trying to change this. The people get to control what information they want to share with such companies. And in turn create a system where they get paid for the data (in this case gems) they share. The payment could be in form of cash or discount coupons.

Company’s founder Shane Green said that people will not share information without a level of trust, and that is what the personal data management companies are trying to sell. In order to create a real market for data, enough people need to see an immediate, tangible benefit in filling up their lockers.

If such a practice comes into play, it would be revolutionary for the whole of online industry, positive or negative? One can’t really say that at this stage.

Personal’s services are available via its website, iOS and Android apps.

The company recently raised USD 4.5 Mn round from Bill Miller, who has been a long-time leader in mutual fund investing. He will now be joining the company’s board of directors.

To contact the author, write to sugandh.dhawan@wirefootindia.com

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