You’re reading The Brazilian Report‘s weekly tech roundup, a digest of the main news concerning technology and innovation in Brazil. This week’s topics: ICT infrastructure, health tech, and data protection. Happy reading!

AC Cloud’s new data center in Brazil

Telecommunications company Angola Cables recently launched their cloud service, just a few months after the inauguration of their data center in Fortaleza.

Among other benefits, the ‘Infrastructure as a Service’ (IaaS) promises connection speeds up to six times faster along their three </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">subsea cable routes</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, a 24-hour IT team, and customizable cybersecurity settings. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The rise of </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">cloud computing</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> serves as a useful reminder that sharing, saving, and using information doesn’t just happen on its own. Our ability to do everything from sending emails to hosting websites requires an entire infrastructure of people, things, and space—a whole lot of space! In 2015, Itaú (Brazil&#8217;s largest private bank) inaugurated a data center that reportedly takes up 815,000 square meters—over 80 football fields. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Data centers house all the hardware necessary for computing and data storage. Servers and other IT equipment are obvious; less so are all the supporting systems that keep the hardware from crashing. Appropriate standards for power supplies and cooling systems, as well as physical security systems such as biometrics and video surveillance, are essential. A tier system exists for certifying these applications, governed by the Uptime Institute. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Clearly, these centers require an enormous amount of investment to build and run, which is why cloud computing is so attractive to businesses that require a large amount of storage, but can’t afford the costs. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Operating on a cloud means businesses need only an internet connection to function. The cloud provider takes on the responsibility of the physical hardware, as well as software and IT staff. Additionally, most cloud operators charge only by usage, so costs are proportional to how much “space” the business takes up. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Cybersecurity is always a concern, and cloud services set up user logins, encryption, and firewalls to keep data safe. It is important, however, for businesses to be selective in choosing cloud plans and settings that fit their security needs and comply with </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">cybersecurity laws</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Angola Cable cloud will be hosted in São Paulo until it can be moved to the data center in Fortaleza. Both Amazon and Microsoft also host their IaaS platforms in São Paulo, while the nearest Google data center is in Chile. As more Brazilians become </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">connected to the internet</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> and businesses explore the </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">next wave of internet technology</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, in-country data centers will play an increasingly large role in business development. </span></p> <hr /> <h2>Health tech continues to grow</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Health tech company Feegow Clinic closed BRL 20 million in funding with DNA Capital on July 6. The startup seeks to provide system support to healthcare providers and institutions, offering solutions in everything from health records and scheduling, to </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">telemedicine</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> and business metrics. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Medicine is often the last area to be updated with the latest technology, but in Brazil it is transforming in leaps and bounds. According to the Global Startup Ecosystem Report, published by research group Startup Genome, health tech is one of the most promising areas for startups in São Paulo because Brazil is the largest healthcare market in South America. A whopping 87 percent of doctors have answered their patient’s questions via WhatsApp and this “telemedicine” is expanding to include remote consultations and diagnoses. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Brazil’s new data protection law puts special restrictions on healthcare data, explicitly stating that insurance companies cannot use data to inform employment decisions. The law also includes considerations for </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Brazil’s elderly population</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, mandating that data be presented in terms that are “adequate to their understanding.” </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Nevertheless, Brazil’s regulations are much more favorable to health techs than countries like the U.S., where HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) laws limit remote health monitoring and data sharing. A number of Brazilian startups, most notably LinCare, propose to use cloud sharing of biometric data, such as blood pressure and heart rate, to give elderly patients more autonomy in their day-to-day lives.</span></p> <hr /> <h2>Bolsonaro sanctions law creating a data protection authority</h2> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">President Jair Bolsonaro approved a law sanctioning the creation of the National Data Protection Authority (ANPD). This federal authority would preside over data protection laws, including the General Data Protection Law (LGPD), which comes into force next year. The creation of the authority was originally rejected by former President Michel Temer on the basis that a new public watchdog would lead to more expenditure. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mr. Bolsonaro passed the law with a number of vetos, including a paragraph that would require decisions made via algorithms to be checked by humans, as well as one delineating the relationship between LGPD and the Law of Access to Information (LAI). The latter paragraph would have protected personal data on public databases. The president rejected it on the basis that sharing this data would be important for the regular operation of public institutions dealing with, for example, social security data. </span></p> <hr /> <h2>Events</h2> <h4><a href="">Forum e-commerce</a> (São Paulo)</h4> <ul> <li><span style="font-weight: 400;">The largest e-commerce event in Latin America celebrates its 10th year. Over 100 speakers will present on July 16-18. </span></li> </ul> <h4><a href="">Gramado</a> (Rio Grande do Sul)</h4> <ul> <li><span style="font-weight: 400;">Described as a “brainstorming session”, Gramado is an event for early-stage start-ups looking to discuss disruption in their fields. The third edition takes place July 31-August 2.

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BY Juliana Costa

Juliana is a growth strategist and contributor to The Brazilian Report