Have you ever gone to Google, started typing a search, and the answers are up before you’re even done typing? There’s a good chance you have, and the reason why this happens is because of algorithms that Google uses.
These algorithms have more power than you think. Sure, companies use them to target consumers, which is why you see coupons pop up in your email inbox. But, U-H professor Chris Bronk says there are negative impacts, too.
“People would be denied access to things based on bad data parsed through an algorithm,” Bronk said.
And what could you be shut out from based on an algorithmic decision> Loans, insurance or even jobs, and that is why some are calling for transparency from these companies about the algorithms, just like they have in Europe.
“Anytime you can enforce some transparency with regard to these decisions it’s not a terrible idea,” Bronk stated.
But, he says we are a long way away from getting what Europe has, which is a data protection law, which offers the right of explanation when you're impacted by a decision made by algorithm.