SOME OF THE biggest of the big names in tech have come together to launch a consortium dedicated to finding ways to provide customers with truly private data.
Google, Intel and Microsoft are joining forces with Alibaba, Arm, Baidu, IBM, Red Hat, Swisscom and Tencent to create the Confidential Computing Consortium (CCC).
The object of the exercise is "defining and accelerating" completely secure data from end-to-end, all provided by open-source code which provides a consistent process, with no cost to the end-user.
As you might expect, The Linux Foundation, or "Tech Switzerland" will be hosting the project, which already includes a framework for Microsoft Trusted Execution Environments along with tools from Red Hat and Intel.
The move is likely to be unpopular with some governments. Just two weeks ago, UK home secretary Priti Patel called again for back doors to be placed in all products to allow access by law enforcement.
But the demand for privacy grows ever stronger, fuelled by scandals like that of Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, and there's very little that governments can do to stop it.
Don't expect miracles in the short term. These products have to be developed in their own right and then synergised to form a joined-up approach before it can be seen as a "complete" privacy solution.
What's more important is that it's happening at all, and the biggest stakeholders are some, but not all, of those companies most under fire for the sheer quantity of data they collect.
Then, of course, there's the trust aspect. Do we trust this consortium to do what it says, without making any loopholes for itself? That part, only time will tell. µ
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