MICHAEL INGRASSIA, PRESIDENT AND GENERAL COUNSEL AT TRŪATA DISCUSSES THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BEING HELPFUL AND BEING CREEPY
The AI race is on and companies around the world are competing for global advantage in artificial intelligence-based innovation. Many experts have written off European companies in this race, based on the assumption that they will fall behind due to Europe’s perceived stricter attitudes and laws on data privacy. But is this true? Or could this privacy-focused attitude actually be a secret weapon when it comes to winning the AI race?
Rather than hobbling companies, Europe’s data protection regulation, the GDPR, has in fact given businesses across the continent a secret advantage when it comes to embracing the power and opportunities that AI presents. The values that companies across Europe uphold are set to enhance and accelerate new, privacy-enhancing ways to analyze and manage data. This established fluency in using privacy-enhanced analytics will enable European companies to extract value from data while retaining the trust, respect, and loyalty of their consumers.
Unsurprisingly, the US and China have a head start in the AI race due to their large populations and flexible privacy laws. However, in the long term, overstepping privacy boundaries is likely to cause a backlash as consumers are becoming far more aware of their digital footprints and the value of their data. It is the typical tale of the tortoise and the hare – how safe and steady will win the race (in this case respecting consumers’ right to privacy will enable success in AI, rather than stifling it).
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