Why is Big Tech a Big Deal?

Whether we like it or not, there are some companies, websites and documents services practically everyone uses. They are often referred to as “Big Tech”. Just because they are big, doesn’t mean they are safe to use for everything we tend to depend on them to do.

The Personal Archive can help you avoid relying on them for data and document security. Let’s look at how we can do that.

Why we overuse Big Tech

Have you thought about how powerful companies like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft are? They have a lot of control over what we search for, purchase, and how we communicate with each other. They also have access to the important documents we depend on, where we store them and often when we share them, especially by email.

You’ve probably heard the phrase ‘digital concentration’ in the news. That refers to the monopoly big tech companies have over the markets they operate in and our online lives. It tends to crop up with references to ‘competition’.

Competition is a good thing. It enables different companies to do the same thing and strive to be the best at it; the fastest delivery, the lowest prices, top notch customer service – you get the idea. But if there are only a few gigantic companies doing these things, there’s less competition and we become over reliant on a select few. So, competition – like trading standards, information and access to our data – needs to be regulated.

EU lawmakers are strengthening legislation on levels of oversight for “gatekeeper” platforms like Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft. The new laws will require big tech to do more to prevent misinformation, avoid selling counterfeit goods and to disclose more about how they use our data to target us with advertising. That last point is fairly black box stuff so it’s going to be interesting to see how they handle it.

You might ask why that matters? Good question.

The Google Factor

Have you noticed how many systems have fallen over lately? Amazon and AWS, British Airways and the big one, Google.

Remember a few months back when Google crashed and mass panic ensued? No access to Gmail? No YouTube? No calendar access?

It reminded many of us about how reliant we are on big tech: Too reliant. It also resulted in a lot of hilarious memes on social media, but that’s a happy by-product.

Google said that the meltdown involved its authentication system: the mechanism it uses to manage how we log in and use its services, and those of third-party developers. Basically, it’s the way Google watches what we’re doing online, even when we aren’t using Gmail.

Our Gmail, Appstore and Amazon accounts act like portals into our lives: what we’re browsing, where we spend money, the news sites we visit and the conversations we have.

These aren’t habits we have positively elected to share. There are some conversations, documents and pieces of data we need to share, store and work with which are too important to linger on the servers of online conglomerates for anyone to see and steal.

So, where should we store and share our confidential documents? Hmm, I wonder…

Personal Archive problem-solving

Truth time: It’s great that lawmakers are tightening up the rules for Big Tech, but there are things we can do, too.

If it was possible to safely store and share your most important documents with the big guys, there’d be no point in platforms like ours. Would you use Amazon for online banking? Gmail for storing your will? No, me neither.

Here’s what we can do about it to make our files instantly safer!

  • Make a list of the platforms you use and audit them yourself.
  • Grab our Free toolkit when you start a free trial with us. It can help manage your important documents
  • Gather all of those past purchases, policies, contracts and documents together (they may be languishing in your in box or in various online locations)
  • Start your shiny new Personal Archive account with a double free trial when you sign up this month!
  • Use #Hashags for quick searching, load and store your important documents. We are here to help and show you around.
  • Share them with others via secure links which you can track when they’re opened and downloaded.
  • You can even invite your family and friends to do the same.

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