Data Portability: The costs of imposed openness


Many competition agencies are considering data portability mandates to increase competition. These would require companies to make customers’ data available to move to other services, or to make their services interoperable with others so that users could share their data between different services on an ongoing basis.


Data portability mandates can be costly and cumbersome for service providers, and provide little benefit to users who do not end up using them. This can mean that innovative businesses end up being less able to control and improve their products. Thus data portability mandates may often end up being either too vague to be useful, or too costly relative to the marginal benefits they deliver.

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