Profila: Giving Data Power Back To The People
Sustainable ADA | Feb 10, 2023
What is Profila?
Profila is a Web5 relationships platform, delivering value to people and brands, through a private data and content channel.
Profila’s web app is designed so that you can easily control which brands use your data and for what purposes. It’s a tool to help you communicate with the brands in your life so they can get to know you better, and provide you with a better service that is more personalized, accurate, and ethical.
Profila’s platform allows you:
➡️ Build up the most accurate digital representation of yourself, under your full control, via gamified self-discovery quizzes.
➡️ You can learn about privacy, the rights you have in relation to your data and exercise your data subject rights (e.g. right to be forgotten) in an easy 3-click process.
➡️ You can choose which brands can access your data in exchange for value (which is a share of the revenue that brands pay for your data, but also rewards or exclusive and personalized offers)
Brands can use Profila’s web platform:
➡️ To get ethical and evergreen customer data & insights directly from the individual customer, allowing them to deliver a true personalized experience, without any surveillance.
➡️ Brands can use Profila as a new private and 1:1 channel but can also link this new ethical data source via APIs to their existing CRM & activation platforms to make it actionable as part of their existing marketing tech stack.
If you accept to connect to a brand, you can determine the cadence of your relationship. You can:
➡️ Allow them access to certain parts of your data,
➡️ tell them how frequently they can contact you,
➡️ via which channel.
If a company sends you commercial content (like an ad for which they normally pay facebook or google), you get 50 percent of the ad budget the brand pays to deliver content to you
ZEKE is the utility token for profila and you have the opportunity to “share your data in exchange for value”.
With Profila’s Zero Knowledge Token (ZEKE), you will support a new, decentralized data and ad ecosystem in which People and Brands benefit from data sharing equally, anonymous or consent-based.
Read the ZKA research whitepaper
- ABBREVIATION ZEKE
- ON-CHAIN ASSETCARDANO-NATIVE TOKEN – ADA CHAIN
- MINTED ON 22/11/2021
- VISIBLE ON CARDANO EXPLORER
- TOTAL SUPPLY 500,000,000
Vision and Mission
Giving people control over their personal data and the information that brands share with them, and giving brands a better way to service their customers, without surveillance
Michiel Van Roey
Co-Founder, General Counsel, Chief Decentralization
Co-Founder & CEO
Co-Founder & Chief Product Officer
Chief Operating Officer
Learn more about the rest of the team below:
Why Cardano of all the Blockchains?
Profila was introduced to Cardano by their (informal) advisor Dr. Mihaela Ulieru, currently heading strategic impact projects at IOHK. She introduced Profila to the IOHK leadership team and they were able to meet most of the leadership team. Including Charles Hoskinson in In Cape Town of October 2021. The Profila team to IOHK of what they had been working on at Profila.
“We felt the love and decided to go for Cardano!” – Profila
Before diving into why Profila chose Cardano.
Profila wants to clarify that Profila today is a centralized application that has decentralized functionalities. This means that the entire mobile application is not in full running on the Cardano blockchain (as a full DApp), but instead largely on Microsoft Azure.
However, many of the crucial functionalities in the mobile application that help people control their data and get better value from sharing it, are integrated (or currently being integrated) with the Cardano blockchain.
In addition, Profila is integrating decentralized ID functionality from Atala Prism, and working on a CNFT use case for customer created content.
“We choose to work with Cardano because of many reasons, one of which being the community support we have received so far. We were advised to present our blockchain use cases on Catalyst, where we had a tremendous amount of support. From Fund 5 to Fund 9, we have been supported by the Cardano community for no less than 10 times for our proposals around data, smart contracts, NFTs and digital identity (Atala prism). The community support is definitely one of the elements that makes Cardano unique. “ – Michiel Van Roey
Currently, Profila is working on several use cases built on the Cardano blockchain because they believe in its enormous potential.
An example use case is their privacy ledger, which is an immutable way to exercise the legal rights you have in relation to your data you shared as an individual with a brand you connect to, as well as the instructions that you give these brands.
Each time a piece of data is shared, or each time you tell a company how to use (or not use) your data, your instruction hereto is hashed (meaning encrypted) and saved on the Cardano blockchain. This way, you have immutable proof of what happened, the terms under which you shared data. In case a brand misuses your info, shares it with other parties, keeps it longer than agreed, or uses it for other purposes than included in that initial agreement, you have black/white immutable proof of what happened.
More about our digital identity, smart contract, NFT and token use cases (funded by Catalyst) can be found in their medium.
“Our choice for Cardano is of course also technical. As a third generation blockchain it is less expensive to transact on Cardano than other chains. This allows it to scale globally with minimum energy consumption, solving one of the biggest issues in the current blockchain ecosystem. The costs involved in a transaction depend on the size of individual transactions. However, the average costs are generally more friendly than Ethereum.
Cardano is also fast. It is capable of processing over 1.000 transactions every second (TPS), proving faster than Ethereum, which supports only 20 transactions per second for now. In the future, the Cardano network could potentially support 1 million TPS (pending an upgrade to the blockchain platform called Hydra).” – Michiel Van Roey
“We believe the Cardano blockchain is best suited for Profila’s low value and high-volume transactions. On Profila you get compensated for granting access to your data (50/50) and you receive 50% of the advertising spend when you opt-in for paid content from brands (unlike platforms such as facebook and Instagram, where only the platform gets paid by brands to deliver you ads). Because Profila pays out people for viewing ads, we will have millions of transactions per day, all of a low value. The price of an ad can range from cents to a couple of EUR, but rarely higher. Cardano will allow us to effectively deploy our ad-delivery model on blockchain.” – Michiel Van Roey
Challenges in the Blockchain space
“Challenge is adoption by brands (who currently use surveillance based marketing techniques), and by people (who will have to take active steps to control their data). It requires a new mindset by both sides at the table.” – Michiel Van Roey
Connection to the Sustainable Development Goals
The United Nations’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are an urgent call for action by all countries. This enables countries to create global partnerships that work towards achieving these goals. The goal is to achieve the SDGs, which are built upon decades of work by countries and the UN.
Blockchain technology is a key technology for the SDGs because it enables stakeholders globally to have the ability to track, record, and share data that is immutable, timestamped, and verifiable.
How Profila connects to the SDGs
As you can read in the description on the UN website for goal 9, more than half of the world’s population is now online and businesses have increasingly digitalized their products and services. COVID-19 only increased people’s use of the internet for access to essential goods and services, healthcare, and education.
More people thus interact and exchange their (personal) information with companies, organizations, healthcare providers, schools, and even governments over the internet.
This is all part of the 4th industrial revolution, which is a data-driven economy with new business models. However, whereas companies and organizations have the means to take part in the data driven economy, people often lack the same resources and knowledge. As indicated on the website of the World Economic Forum, the 4th industrial revolution should be about more than just technology-driven change, but should be seen as “an opportunity to help everyone … harness converging technologies in order to create an inclusive, human-centered future”.
“It is exactly in this space that our platform plays a crucial part. We help brands and organizations transform to a person-centric digital customer relationship, with a new private channel to advertise to and communicate with their customers, surveillance-free; while providing consumers with the resources and knowledge to keep up with this digital revolution. One simple tool for each individual to learn about and manage personal data, enforce privacy rights, monitor relationships with brands; and obtain compensation for data shared. We believe such a tool is crucial for people going forward.” – Michiel Van Roey
Profila under Goal 4 – “Quality Education”
Over the past months Profila has been talking to Josianne Baron, a Children’s Rights and Business Specialist at United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). Who Creates awareness around the rights and risks associated with children and digital marketing.
View enclosed the UN discussion paper to which one of their advisers – Mikko Kotila – contributed Children and Digital Marketing: Rights, risks and responsibilities.
“Increasingly, children exercise their right to development, education, freedom of expression and access to information online. Their full enjoyment of this range of human rights depends on ensuring that they are able to access and use digital technologies without putting their personal information at risk.”
However, the report as well as Profila’s own research indicates that the current marketing surveillance model tracks consumers in order to get to know them, mostly without their knowledge or consent (e.g. cookie technology).
“This is especially worrisome when it relates to children. Although parents play an important role in their kids’ activities online, they often lack the knowledge themselves. To solve this lack of awareness, the report states that both parents and children “need educational resources to improve digital literacy”.
Profilas has been discussing with Josianne how Profila – through their privacy awareness modules – could contribute to a better education on privacy and digital marketing for parents and children. Creating a better understanding of children’s (privacy) rights in relation to their personal information, and how – through Profila’s privacy rights dashboard they could provide children (and their parents) with effective control over any of their personal data that gets collected online.
“In addition to our awareness / education modules in the app, we are working on a chatbot that breaks down and simplifies legal terms and conditions that people are asked to accept online. We are applying for an innovation project grant (Innosuisse) together with the University of Lucerne (HSLU), to further develop the privacy chatbot that we have built with CERN’s privacy team this year. Our improved chatbot would be able to break down privacy policies and legal terms into understandable information.” – Michiel Van Roey
Profila on Children and Digital Marketing
A final point from the UN discussion paper Children and Digital Marketing: Rights, risks and responsibilities that is interesting to mention where Profila has a role to play relates to the need for exploring alternative business models to give data control back to people (p. 29).
On this topic, the report includes a specific quote from CERN’s Tim Berners-Lee on ”data control back in the hands of people” and ”exploring alternative business models like subscriptions and micro-payments”.
This is exactly why they have founded Profila, to give back control to the people.
Profila’s personal data subscription model allows people to decide who has access to their data, on their terms, and in exchange for value (payments by brands and organizations).
“To truly solve the digital advertising challenge, we also need to help brands find a better way to advertise and communicate with their customers. For this reason, Profila has created a new private channel to advertise to and communicate with their customers, surveillance-free.” – Michiel Van Roey
Profila and Sustainable Marketing under SDG goals 7 (affordable and clean energy), 12 (responsible consumption and production)
Energy is today the most critical environmental challenge. The amount of carbon emissions contributing to climate change is significantly influenced by both the production and consumption of energy. Measuring and reducing the energy consumption of services is a crucial step toward reducing adverse environmental effects caused by carbon emissions. Millions of websites rely on online advertisements to generate revenue, with most websites earning most or all of their revenues from ads. As a result, hundreds of billions of online ads are delivered daily to internet users to be rendered in their browsers. Both the delivery and rendering of each ad consume energy.
Since the advent of the internet in the early 1990s, the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector has become a major driver of developed economies as well as a factor contributing to the increase in global energy consumption. Depending on the source, the total energy consumption of the Internet is approximated to be between 5% and 15% of total global energy consumption, that is around 416.2 TWh per year. This percentage is projected to rise sharply in the coming years. Online advertising is one of the main sources of revenue supporting the operation of the commercial Internet. Millions of websites, social media platforms, mobile apps, video platforms, etc, rely on online advertisements as their main source of revenue. As a result, each day, hundreds of billions of online ads are delivered to Internet users to be rendered by their devices. Indeed, online advertising is a $450 billion per year industry with an inter-annual growth of 35.4% between 2020 and 2021, according to the IAB’s most recent Internet Advertising Revenue Report of 2021.
It is exactly here where Profila’s new consent-based advertising model is revolutionary. Because people are able to use Profila to limit the number of ads they see and directly communicate the frequency of ads to the companies they like to engage with, a company will only send an advert when it is relevant. Our consent-based advertising model will drastically reduce the number of (unwanted) ads that are shown today, thereby also drastically reducing the energy consumption of the online advertising industry. We call it “Sustainable Marketing”.
Other connections to the SDGs
Recently Profila has finalized their research around a new concept called “Zero Knowledge Advertising”.
This is where brands can advertise to their target customer without knowing anything about them. A new model that enables no personal data to be shared when advertising to consumers.
Profila is starting to develop parts of this solution.
Learn more from their research paper with the University of Madrid.
Profila is launching its new product in May 2023 and is looking for testers who want to test and provide feedback on some of the new features.
Anyone interested in helping support with testing efforts email – email@example.com
Who Profila would like to work with in the Cardano ecosystem
Profila is currently looking for #web3 B2C companies #buildingoncardano who have a direct relationship with their customer for example you send them emails or other messages frequently. They are looking for businesses who want to test Profila with their customers.
“Do you want to annoy your customers less (frequently) but still get to know them better so you can contact them with the right information about your company at the right time?”
If so, reach out to the Profila Team and collaborate!