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Neil McBride is interviewed by Marketing Week

Ethics of Profiling

There is one element of profiling that can be overlooked by marketers. This is the ethical question of how and when to use what can be very personal and sensitive profiling information in a marketing campaign.

Dr Neil McBride is a reader in information technology at De Montfort University in Leicester and he says there are still many grey areas surrounding profiling and privacy.

“Organisations need a code of conduct for how they handle data and the assumptions that are made from any analysis,” he says. “Consumers do not always know what data they are putting out there and a marketing department can often know more about someone’s preferences and buying habits than the person themselves or their family. There is a duty to treat such data with care and respect, and this is where human intervention is critical.

“Individual marketers need empathy for the way a customer will be feeling,” he adds. “They might be buying something sensitive which could cause a family rift, for instance.”

Read the article Neil McBride is featured in.

Posted on Monday 17th September 2012

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