Google Healthcare: Can we ever trust Google with our health data?

It is a silly question posed by Financial Times. It gives a broad overview of Google’s foray in healthcare but the entire premise of write up hinges on “trust”.

I have covered privacy and technology for the past seven years; and having looked at the evolution of the sector closely, I can effectively proclaim it dead. It is impossible now to mitigate the effects of online connections. These companies are unstoppable and have become “too big to fail”. The discussion should be about the merits of their solutions and practical application in the clinical domain; rather than a catch-all marketing hype about technology companies toe-dipping into healthcare markets.

After transforming almost every other industry, the world’s largest tech companies now want to fix stretched healthcare systems, an industry worth $8.7tn worldwide. As they hunt for new growth engines, Google, Amazon and Apple are convinced they can make money by cutting costs in the sector. With vast financial resources — last week the stock market value of Google’s parent company Alphabet rose above $1tn for the first time — computing power and banks of AI experts, no one should underestimate their abilities.

Amazon has bought an online pharmacy and entered into a joint venture, Haven, with JPMorgan and Berkshire Hathaway, which aims to create a new kind of health insurance for the companies’ 1m employees. Apple is using its Watch to improve fitness and cardiovascular health. Microsoft is selling cloud services to hospitals and drug companies, while Facebook is offering tools for users to manage screenings.

via Can we ever trust Google with our health data? | Financial Times

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