Yes, I accept all cookies.” That phrase quickly became one of the most clicked-on online pop-up notifications. Want to read, buy or activate something online? Then everyone recognizes themselves in the “no time-wasting” surfing behavior, where we rarely stop to think about what exactly we are clicking on. Before you realize it, as a consumer you have shared your data with hundreds of websites. This is understandable, but how can you as a consumer get past this “cookie chaos” – or perhaps better yet our total data chaos, – now? It’s time for consumers to be in control of all their data themselves – and for that to become a lot more manageable.

From incompetent to competent – and from unconscious to conscious

In 1954, psychologist Abraham Maslow described four stages in the acquisition of knowledge or skills. In the first stage, a person learning is unconsciously incompetent and thus unaware of his lack of knowledge. When you do become aware of this, Maslow speaks of conscious incompetence. You then realize that you need to learn something. If you start actively learning and practicing, you become consciously competent. In the fourth and final step, the new knowledge becomes ready and you can apply it automatically. Then you are finally unconsciously competent.
If we apply the Maslow model to the road we take as consumers in terms of our data management, we currently seem to be mostly consciously incompetent. We know that we need to learn something about how we handle our online data and that we have a lot of steps to take in that learning process. But what then and how exactly, that remains the question.

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Manage your own data

At Doccle, we explore how to make the collection and management of personal data secure. We also believe that people should be able to manage their own data, where consumer control and oversight are crucial. It is abundantly clear: we lack central control for personal data management. There are numerous companies and organizations managing consumers’ data themselves, which does not help user control. The so-called “cookie chaos” is a good example of this. You have to accept your cookies over and over again at hundreds of websites. Needless to say, you end up not knowing where exactly which of your data are stored. Or think of all the companies you have ever given your address to. How do you keep control of that, what if you move, for example?

However, I believe the time has come to become more aware. Let us realize that our data are scattered here and there and let us actively look for a solution to go from chaos to overview. That should be achievable and that is where we at Doccle want to lend a helping hand.

In the foreseeable future, we want to offer every user the ability to manage their own data centrally and themselves. We want every consumer to become a consciously competent manager of their data and that of family members. By bringing together all your data from different companies, you get a central overview that is not only clear and user-friendly, but also has numerous concrete benefits.

Down with the administrative chaos!

A good example is found with parents whose children are in sports or youth clubs. For these, you can ask the health insurance company for a refund of part of the registration fee. This is still a cumbersome process with awkward paperwork. Doccle could make an automatic proposal here to share the sports club data with the mutual insurance company so that you always receive the payments to which you are entitled. A personal data assistant could really help many people. Not only would Doccle allow you to know perfectly who can use your data for what purposes, but you could also modify those permissions in a centralized environment.

This not only helps the user, but also companies. Already today, Doccle forms a secure, administrative connection between user and company. However, we see the benefits of that unburdening growing much further. A central data management point ensures instant accessibility and 100% up-to-date info, making verification processes much faster and easier. Such an increase in efficiency can save a company a lot of time administratively. Just think of the bank, which can consult your latest (and unadulterated) payroll records much more quickly when providing a loan. Or an organization looking to hire you could, with permission, immediately consult your diploma.

So what does such a central data vault look like? You can best compare the digital safe to the closet in your living room, in which you have drawers with all your documents. You decide which document to take out of the drawer and whether to share it with others. In a digital safe, it’s the same way.

Giving data management back to the user is our ambition. Moreover, that should be close by, in one place, rather than on numerous platforms. Doccle’s digital ecosystem can provide an option. In this way, we can all manage our data more consciously, more carefully and with more confidence. When you have the right tools, digital data management is not that much harder than cleaning out your closet at home from time to time. We therefore value an approachable service, with clear buttons and a simple structure, so that everyone can get on this train with us.