The increased and improved use of data may help individuals get loans and more accurate credit histories, but there are privacy and free-will concerns, Slate reports. In the past, the lack of reliable data about individuals without credit histories forced banks to put them in high-risk categories. Now, more data—from social networks and other sources—and smarter algorithms can improve that accuracy. One company uses as many as 8,000 indicators to assess loan worthiness—including geolocation data, social graphs, behavioral analytics and consumers’ shopping habits. Meanwhile, cancer researchers in the UK are using Big Data on tumor genes to improve cancer treatment. The researchers face regulatory and privacy obstacles, however, around sharing such sensitive data with colleagues and drugmakers, InformationWeek reports.
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