In a recent review of 23 internet companies by a consumer watchdog group, Privacy International, Google was the only one to receive the lowest grade, reserved for those with "comprehensive consumer surveillance and entrenched hostility to privacy."
With that low mark in mind, you might find the idea of Google's having its virtual hands on your medical history a bit disturbing. The company, and its rival Microsoft, are each taking the first steps toward the burgeoning, and lucrative, industry of electronic health-records management.
Having your medical records in an accessible, searchable and consistent format is certainly appealing. But you, and your doctor, would also become a magnet for advertisers offering services based on your particular medical history.
Eminent technology investor and pundit Esther Dyson isn't worried about privacy policies, her personal records being hacked, or these companies cooperating with the National Security Agency. In fact, she wants you to turn over not just your medical records, but your personal genetic sequence as well.
In a recent interview on Charlie Rose, Dyson explained that she's among ten people about to put...