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Company Doesn’t Use Customers’ Personal Data For Profit: Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

"Customers must be in control of their data. It is our collective responsibility to keep the data safe," the Microsoft CEO had emphasised in May

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Microsoft
Microsoft doesn't use customers' data for profit: Satya Nadella. (Wikimedia Commons)

In an apparent jibe against rivals Google and Facebook, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has said the company doesn’t use customers’ personal data for profit unlike some other firms.

In an interview with The Times on Monday, Satya Nadella said the company “had chosen not to squeeze the last drop of revenue from the troves of user data on its Bing search engine and the Linkedin social network, which it bought in 2016”.

LinkedIn, which Microsoft bought for $26 billion, has over 560 million users and Bing is the number 3 search engine globally.

“We don’t want to overmonetise. If anything, one of the things we’ve done is to is to make sure that the utility is maximised for the users,” Satya Nadella was quoted as saying.

Nadella’s comments “draw a sharp divide between Microsoft and other large American technology companies, which have been criticised for abusing the personal information of their users”.

At a Microsoft event in London last week, Satya Nadella called on technology companies to defend users’ privacy as human right, urging firms and governments to collectively work together to protect the most vulnerable section in society.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

Satya Nadella applauded the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as first step towards securing data privacy.

“All of us will have to think about the digital experiences we create to treat privacy as a human right,” Nadella was quoted as saying.

“GDPR as a piece of legislation, a piece of regulation is a great start and we’ve done a lot of hard work to become compliant with GDPR.”

Amid increasing data breaches, tech giants are busy deliberating on how to ensure privacy and security for the users.

Also Read- WHO Ships Vaccination For Yellow Fever in Ethiopia

“Customers must be in control of their data. It is our collective responsibility to keep the data safe,” the Microsoft CEO had emphasised in May.

“We have the responsibility to ensure that the new-age technology is empowering everyone, creating equitable growth for all while creating employment on the global scale.” (IANS)

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Microsoft Lays AI Sensors for Smart Farming, Cutting-edge Healthcare in India

"The role of AI will only get bigger for both agriculture and healthcare sectors in India. The seeds are now sown," Maheshwari added

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Microsoft
Logo of Microsoft outside it's office. Pixabay

China, the world’s biggest agricultural producer, is leading the race when it comes to empowering farmers with Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven technologies.

The aim is clear: To help the community digitally record information to cut costs and increase yields — with just a smartphone in their hands as AI leveraged Cloud computing to make sense of the data for farmers.

India has now embarked on a journey to bring AI sensors into the fields.

For Anant Maheshwari, the company’s India President, Microsoft has begun empowering small-holder farmers in India to increase their income through higher crop yield and greater price control.

“We are working with farmers, state governments, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare to create an ecosystem for AI into farming,” Maheshwari told IANS.

In some villages in Telangana, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, farmers are receiving automated voice calls that tell them whether their cotton crops are at risk of a pest attack, based on weather conditions and crop stage.

“There are companies that serve equipments and capabilities for farmers. We are working with most of the stakeholders, like generic crop protection and seeds company United Phosphorus Ltd and engineering conglomerate Escorts, to create better AI-based models for farming in the country,” informed Maheshwari.

With United Phosphorus, Microsoft is working on providing front-end capabilities for farmers.

Escorts is working with Microsoft for its Cloud and AI technology enabling precision agriculture capabilities to help farmers make informed decisions and get more from their farms.

In collaboration with the International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), Microsoft has developed an AI-Sowing App powered by Cortana Intelligence Suite including Machine Learning and Power BI.

The app sends sowing advisories to participating farmers on the optimal date to sow. The farmers don’t need to install any sensors in their fields or incur any capital expenditure. All they need is a feature phone capable of receiving text messages.

Representational image.
Representational image. Wikimedia Commons

After laying the initial infrastructure for smart agriculture, Microsoft has also taken further steps towards cutting-edge health care with the help from AI-based “Intelligent Cloud” and “Intelligent Edge”.

Nearly three million heart attacks happen in India every year and 30 million Indians suffer from coronary diseases.

In a novel effort to predict the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) among the Indian population, Microsoft India and Apollo Hospitals have launched the first-ever AI-powered heart disease risk score API (application programme interface).

It provides the capability of applying ML and AI to cardio-vascular health records to develop an Indian-specific heart risk score.

With the new heart risk score for India, Apollo Hospitals’ AI model helps gauge a patient’s risk for heart disease and provides rich insights to doctors on treatment plans and early diagnosis.

“This shows how AI-driven models can make a big difference and help the doctors in a country where health care needs.

Also Read- Apple Reselling iPhone SE Devices in US

The company has also applied AI to devices for early detection of diabetic retinopathy to prevent blindness.Microsoft India also announced a partnership with SRL Diagnostics to expand the “AI Network for Healthcare” to pathology to detect cancer.

Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, Chairman and Executive Director of Narayana Health, has performed over 15,000 heart operations. His hospital chain does one-sixth of heart surgeries in India.

“His hospital chain is working on Kaizala app, Power BI and Azure to run the operation smoothly.

“Dr Shetty aims to put all electronic health records on Kaizala for real-time data analysis. This gives a doctor full information about a patient and his past,” said Maheshwari.

In October, NITI Aayog entered into a partnership with Microsoft to deploy AI technologies in areas such as agriculture, healthcare, natural language computing and sustainable environment.

“The role of AI will only get bigger for both agriculture and healthcare sectors in India. The seeds are now sown,” Maheshwari added. (IANS)