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Google Taking Over Health Records Raises Patient Privacy Fears

  • Privacy advocates rap DeepMind Health’s merger into Google
  • Company promises data from U.K. health partnership are safe
Inside Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham As Health Care Tops Voters Concerns
Photographer: Matthew Lloyd/Bloomberg

Three years ago, artificial intelligence company DeepMind embarked on a landmark effort to transform health care in the U.K. Now plans by owner Alphabet Inc. to wrap the partnership into its Google search engine business are tripping alarm bells about privacy.

Data protection advocates cried foul when the company reversed course on an earlier pledge to keep DeepMind Health, which taps millions of British medical records to monitor and diagnose disease, separate from Google. This month Alphabet said it plans to consolidate the businesses.