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“The emergency should not become an opportunity for digital giants to take on too much power”

Grandstand. The Covid-19, an unprecedented crisis, confronts us with new realities. We realize, for example, that we are dependent on the Chinese industry which makes many of the drugs we use, as well as the masks we wear.

But crises are also times when powers are redistributed. How not to see, for example, the rise of digital giants – Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, IBM, etc. – in the domain of health ? Our government sees these companies as allies, which they are to some extent, and we must continue to cooperate with them. But this emergency situation should not become an opportunity for them to take too much power from our lives, that they will keep the crisis past.

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The public procurement system does not allow us to choose French or European technological solutions that would energize our industry and allow us to retain some autonomy. It is quite different in many countries, in the United States for example, which privilege the American companies for their public markets without that being regarded as a bad nationalism.

European solutions

The digital giants are alienating us, taking our markets and our data. We are becoming more and more dependent on them.

Read also Coronavirus: the risk is to enter “a new era of invasive digital surveillance”

Selecting Microsoft's Azure Cloud as the hosting provider for the Health Data Hub is not “Not ideal” but corresponds to a “Choice of opportunity” to “To go fast” in the development of the platform, said hub director Stéphanie Combes. Isn't this a short-term vision? Shouldn't we trust European hosting solutions, as supported by Hub France IA, an association that brings together artificial intelligence initiatives in France?

Our governments should realize that, put together, these various dependencies alienate us and hinder the dynamism of our economy

California start-up Palantir is in talks with France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland to provide them with its data analysis tools to track the spread of Covid-19. Initially funded by the CIA, Palantir works with public actors such as the CIA or the DGSI to track down terrorists. Admittedly, our intelligence services must collaborate, but is our data shared?

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