The more that current farming practices and decisions are driven by the collection of data, the more concern there is on protecting that data. A recent Farm Bureau survey pointed that out, and a recent conference I attended broached that very matter, and the responses were quite interesting.
At this conference, producers were in agreement that the collection of data is necessary to make more informed decisions. But there was also a worry from some that this data could be used against them.
I will agree, it is a very perplexing situation. On one hand, the mountains of data you have collected over the years is invaluable to your farming operation. It is a detailed history that can help you make more informed decisions. Yet valuable data for you can also be of value to others. For example, you can share crop data with the cooperative that handles your spraying to make better weed management decisions.
But we don’t have to look far to find stories of data being stolen and used without permission.
Recently, a group of agriculture technology providers announced an agreement that puts in place key rules on data privacy and security principles.
According to the report, principles of the agreement cover issues including ownership, collection, notice, transparency and consistency, choice, portability, liability and security, and privacy.
It’s a good step forward to address an issue that will only grow as producers collect more and more data.
Do you share your farm’s data?