CNN published a video interview with Salesforce Chairman and co-CEO Marc Benioff headlined, “Marc Benioff on Privacy, Regulation, and Tech's Ethical Dilemma.” The interview took place at Dreamforce this September and features CNN’s Senior Technology Correspondent Laurie Segall and Benioff discussing the trust crisis, leading with values, using business as a platform for change, and more.
In the interview, Benioff says our view of trust and privacy must fundamentally change in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. “Why are we not building more trust? Why are we not building more faith? That is going to be the big question mark,” Benioff said. “I don’t trust the industry to self-regulate. Facebook is the new cigarettes. It’s not good for you, it’s addictive, you don’t know who is trying to get you to use it or misuse it. The government has to step in and regulate it. Why is technology going to be the only industry that the government isn’t going to step in to ensure there is fair practice, truth and trust with consumers or businesses? When technology gets so powerful, they are going to have to step in and do that.”
Benioff believes a national privacy law is needed in the U.S., citing the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as an example of governments stepping up to protect consumers. “Every company needs to be held to a new level of capability in privacy. We’re in this new world. Why is our government not moving fast enough into that world?”
Benioff also discussed creating an Office of Ethical and Humane Use to address concerns when the company’s products are used in ways that don’t align with its values.
“I have tremendous faith that we are going to use technology in a positive way,” Benioff said. “We’re going to heal our environment. We’re going to have ethics in our technology. We’ll figure out how to make this happen. That is kind of the story of our civilization. We’re presented with these challenges, but we are way more powerful than we realize.”
Watch the interview, part of CNN’s series “The Human Code,” here. Also see this CNN profile of Benioff.