This Startup Allows You to Turn Your Data Into Dollars

By: James Flippin · August 18, 2023 · Reading Time: 2 minutes

Cookies For Cash

The ubiquitous collection of user data has become common knowledge for internet users around the world. Companies collect this data and sell it to advertisers, which in turn target you with ads for just the running sneakers you were thinking of buying.

Tech startup Caden is hoping to change this business model. The company aims to give users the choice of what data to sell — and earn money from doing so. Caden just raised $15 million in a Series A funding round led by Nava Ventures, with participation from AME Cloud Ventures, Streamlined Ventures, Montage Ventures, Industry Ventures, 1707 Capital, and AAF Management.

How Does It Work?

Caden connects to your favorite apps and tracks your behavior, such as what you stream, where you travel, what you buy, and everything else advertisers might be in the market for.

If this sounds invasive, here’s some bad news: it’s something most apps and websites are already doing. On the flipside, Caden keeps all that data secured in an encrypted “vault.” You’re able to view your own usage stats and handpick the segments of your data you want to share with advertisers. Caden will then anonymize it before sending it out, separating your identity from your behavior.

The result? The best of both worlds. You control your privacy and the money your personal information is worth. Caden says it has already collected over a billion data points and paid out hundreds of thousands of dollars to users.

The User Data Side Hustle

Caden does not specify how much users can expect to earn from selling their data. Any income would be largely passive, with little additional effort required outside of your daily scrolling and selecting which companies you want lining your pockets. But the opportunity cost of trying Caden may be worth it for privacy-savvy consumers.

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