Google fined £44m by French authorities
Google has been handed a record €50 million (£44 million) fine by France’s data watchdog in the first penalty to stem from the EU’s general data protection regulation (GDPR). France’s data regulator CNIL said it was levying the fine on the search giant for failing to provide transparent and easy to access information on its data consent policies and opt-ins and opt-outs for use of personal data, both of which fall below the strict data protection and management protocols set out in GDPR regulation.
PropTech analytics firm lands £3m
Real estate analytics platform REalyse has secured £3 million funding to expand its PropTech platform.The Series A funding round was led by venture capital firm Anthemis and XTX Ventures, the venture capital arm of XTX Markets, a global electronic liquidity provider.
Church of England uses cashless donation tech
The Church of England is trialling a ‘digital collection box’ solution for making charitable donations via contactless technology from SumUp. Using a card reader and smartphone, members of church congregations can now donate with their card, rather than cash. Parishioners can choose a donation amount - from four set by the Church itself - and pay in seconds.
Ministers under pressure over Huawei 5G involvement
Government ministers are expected to come under further pressure this week to sideline Chinese telecoms firm Huawei from 5G infrastructure projects over spying concerns. Liberal Democrat MP Norman Lamb, the chairman of the science and technology committee, is set to write to Jeremy Wright, the secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport, to reveal whether the UK will take action to bar Huawei from involvement in next generation telecoms networks.
Smart Home startup Den raises £2m
London-based smart home startup Den has raised £2 million in a funding round led by investors including Ian Marchant, former chief executive of SSE energy, and Betfair founder Mark Davies.The latest raise takes the total investment to £5 million since the startup was founded in 2014 by entrepreneur Yasser Khattak, who was then 17.
Tech growth weakest for three years: KPMG
UK tech companies have experienced a loss of momentum in the final quarter of 2018, according to KPMG’s latest market analysis, which found business activity expansion at its slowest pace since the fourth quarter of 2015. Uncertainty around Brexit and global trade frictions have dented client confidence, but buoyant staff hiring and capital spending plans are still in place for 2019, according to the survey.
Digital therapeutics firm raises $10m
Kaia Health, creator of the world’s leading back pain app, has raised $10 million in a Series A round led by Balderton Capital. The investment will be used to support a US roll-out - including a new office in New York City - and to fund further clinical studies.
Cook calls for new data ‘shadow economy’ law
Apple chief executive Tim Cook has called for the introduction of a national privacy law in the US in to tackle the “shadow economy” which trades in citizens’ personal data without their permission. Writing in a column for Time Magazine, the tech giant boss stepped up his campaign against data gathering and brokering by firms with a view to profit, arguing that companies have a responsibility to be more transparent about the data they hold, and that individuals should be given greater powers to request deletion of data held about them.
Fossil sells $40m smartwatch tech to Google
Fossil Group has agreed to sell intellectual property (IP) related to its smartwatch technology to Google for $40 million. The American fashion brand said that under the terms of the deal, its research and development team would be joining Google to support the ongoing development of the technology.
Enterprise to buy travel tech Deem
Car rental giant Enterprise has announced its intent to acquire travel technology platform Deem. The deal would provide Deem with an infusion of capital and resources to help further expand its product roadmap and increase the pace of development and enhancements.
IBM and Vodafone in £426m cloud & 5G deal
IBM is linking up with Vodafone’s business unit in a two-stage deal worth £426 million that will create joint cloud and hosting services, in addition to building artificial intelligence (AI), cloud and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions to help companies prepare for 5G connectivity. As part of the eight year managed-serviced deal, Vodafone has agreed to pay IBM to provide jointly-delivered enterprise solutions to businesses. It will also enable Vodafone Business customers to access IBM’s cloud offerings.
Oil industry invests in blockchain platform
Major oil industry players Chevron, Total and Reliance Industries have made a strategic investment in blockchain-based post-trading platform, highlighting the expansion of the distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the commodities industry. Vakt is a London- based post-trade lifecycle management platform which aims to create a digital ecosystem for the commodities industry powered by blockchain.
Fitbits used for digital health research
The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has launched a project using Fitbit wearable tracking devices to research digital healthcare. The Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) project forms part of an existing digital health experiment launched in May 2018 called All of Us. Fitbit users currently enrolled in this can now choose to sync their accounts to help researchers unlock deeper insights into the relationships between health indicators such as physical activity, heart rate, sleep and health outcomes.