Spanish telecom multinational Telefonica is to trial a blockchain-based platform that lets users sell their personal information.
The news was announced by Wibson, which offers a decentralized data marketplace that allows individuals to sell “validated” private information for a profit. Telefonica will trial the platform to validate the authenticity of its consumer data, Wibson said.
The trial will initially validate data from users of Telefonica subsidiary Movistar in the South American country of Uruguay.
“Telefonica will serve as a notary, helping to verify Movistar subscriber status for consumers selling data through the Wibson marketplace,” the release states.
The notary feature ensures that data in the Wibson marketplace is “always authentic, recent, and high quality,” said Wibson co-founder and CEO Mat Travizano.
Telefonica also took a stake in Wibson last year through its investment arm Wayra, alongside venture capital firms DGG Capital and Kenetic Capital.
Wibson launched its data marketplace back in October, allowing users in with Argentina, Spain, and the U.K. to use its mobile app and a custom token (WIB) to make money from their data. Once a data transaction is confirmed via a smart contract on the platform, individuals receive payment in a wallet on the app.
“The Wibson platform and token provide consumers an easy way to profit from the personal data they create everyday, while asserting full rights of ownership over their personal information,” Travizano said at the time.
Telefonica Group’s chief innovation officer Gonzalo Martin-Villa said in Thursday’s statement:
“Blockchain not only allows us to work with new business models related to personal data. It gives us the opportunity to add a trust layer to operations and design new disruptive services”.