Why Google bought Fitbit

Earlier this month, Google announced the purchase of Fitbit for $2.1B, for which I advised, "Unload your Fitbits."  Fitbit's CEO assured us that Google wouldn't sell the data collected by its consumers:

Fitbit said that it never sells personal information and that its health and wellness data will not be used for Google ads.

Now we know why Google bought Fitbit.  Those little sins of omission.  Sure, they're not going to sell our personal data for ads.  Per the Wall Street Journal, they'll simply "share" this kind of data with health care providers, as an extension of their "Project Nightingale" initiative — and monetize this data-sharing through the back door.  An excerpt: 

Google is engaged in a secret project with one of the country's largest health-care systems to collect and crunch the detailed personal health information of millions of Americans across 21 states, according to people familiar with the matter and internal documents.

The initiative, code-named "Project Nightingale," appears to be the largest in a series of efforts by Silicon Valley giants to gain access to personal health data and establish a toehold in the massive health-care industry.

The data involved in Project Nightingale encompasses lab results, doctor diagnoses and hospitalization records, among other categories, and amounts to a complete health history, including patient names and dates of birth.

Neither patients nor doctors have been notified. At least 150 Google employees already have access to much of the data on tens of millions of patients, according to a person familiar with the matter and documents.

Some Ascension employees have raised questions about the way the data is being collected and shared, both from a technological and ethical perspective, according to the people familiar with the project.

Now all we need is for the federal government to monopolize health care coverage, mandate the use of devices like Fitbit in exchange for receiving that medical coverage, and then share that information with "private" companies such as Ascension — which are really stooges beholden to the government.  Game, set, and match, with respect to individual liberties.

"Don't be evil."  Now, there's some projection!

Earlier this month, Google announced the purchase of Fitbit for $2.1B, for which I advised, "Unload your Fitbits."  Fitbit's CEO assured us that Google wouldn't sell the data collected by its consumers:

Fitbit said that it never sells personal information and that its health and wellness data will not be used for Google ads.

Now we know why Google bought Fitbit.  Those little sins of omission.  Sure, they're not going to sell our personal data for ads.  Per the Wall Street Journal, they'll simply "share" this kind of data with health care providers, as an extension of their "Project Nightingale" initiative — and monetize this data-sharing through the back door.  An excerpt: 

Google is engaged in a secret project with one of the country's largest health-care systems to collect and crunch the detailed personal health information of millions of Americans across 21 states, according to people familiar with the matter and internal documents.

The initiative, code-named "Project Nightingale," appears to be the largest in a series of efforts by Silicon Valley giants to gain access to personal health data and establish a toehold in the massive health-care industry.

The data involved in Project Nightingale encompasses lab results, doctor diagnoses and hospitalization records, among other categories, and amounts to a complete health history, including patient names and dates of birth.

Neither patients nor doctors have been notified. At least 150 Google employees already have access to much of the data on tens of millions of patients, according to a person familiar with the matter and documents.

Some Ascension employees have raised questions about the way the data is being collected and shared, both from a technological and ethical perspective, according to the people familiar with the project.

Now all we need is for the federal government to monopolize health care coverage, mandate the use of devices like Fitbit in exchange for receiving that medical coverage, and then share that information with "private" companies such as Ascension — which are really stooges beholden to the government.  Game, set, and match, with respect to individual liberties.

"Don't be evil."  Now, there's some projection!