Bill Gates says tech firms invite scrutiny in government showdowns

Bill Gates says tech firms invite scrutiny in government showdowns
© Getty Images

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates warned tech firms of government intervention in an interview published on Tuesday, saying the companies should not act arrogantly when working with the federal government.

"The tech companies have to be ... careful that they're not trying to think their view is more important than the government's view, or than the government being able to function in some key areas," Gates said in an interview with Axios.


Gates used the example of tech firms' "enthusiasm about making financial transactions anonymous and invisible, and their view that even a clear mass-murdering criminal's communication should never be available to the government."

"The companies need to be careful that they're not ... advocating things that would prevent government from being able to, under appropriate review, perform the type of functions that we've come to count on," he said.

Gates and his wife Melinda voiced in a letter on Tuesday their willingness to work with the Trump administration, despite having a difference of opinion on a variety of issues.

"Although we disagree with this administration more than the others we’ve met with, we believe it's still important to work together whenever possible. We keep talking to them because if the U.S. cuts back on its investments abroad, people in other countries will die, and Americans will be worse off," Gates said.