PlusPrivacy is the name of a new service whose Android version started rolling out on the Google Play Store a few days back, with the solution being envisioned as the ultimate tool for protecting one’s online privacy, at least if the user doesn’t want to exchange it for “benefits.” The Privacy-For-Benefit feature of the app allows you to trade some of your usage data and other information in exchange for certain discounts and similar incentives from various businesses. Much like the entire service, this particular functionality is still in early stages of development and doesn’t have many participating partners, in addition to not offering direct monetary rewards, though that is a possibility that its creators may be looking to explore in the future.
PlusPrivacy was developed by the Operando Consortium, a project backed by numerous companies looking to change the way in which online privacy is handled by the technology industry and other related sectors. The app is envisioned as a self-sustainable service that takes a minor cut of each transaction between users and businesses that’s paid by the latter, though no exact fees have yet been provided by its developers and they presumably depend on the size of the company looking to be a part of this ecosystem. Operando claims that the data users can share with businesses using PlusPrivacy is the same data that’s already being collected from them by social media networks for free and are hoping that consumers will see the value in their service by realizing that they can benefit from sharing their data with third parties when they log into their services using accounts from Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and similar platforms.
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The app’s dashboard contains a number of controls for managing one’s online privacy, including a universal switch that will automatically change the settings of all your social media profiles in an effort to make them as private and inaccessible to third parties as possible. PlusPrivacy’s users must specifically opt into any data-sharing program with businesses and the idea itself was already met with some positive reception on the part of the European Union and its Horizon 2020 Program which is currently financially supporting it. The solution is currently in beta and may hit the stable channel by the end of the year, Operando suggested, adding that PlusPrivacy will always be free for individuals and its business model will solely rely on companies looking to participate in the program.