Business

Big Tech joins the White House to devise ways to contain outbreak

Apple announced a $15 million package to help countries affected by COVID-19

Silicon Valley is stepping up efforts to deal with the rapidly spreading pandemic. Photo: Shutterstock
  • The global spread of COVID-19 made Facebook, Google, Twitter and Amazon implement remote working policies around the globe
  • Apple will close all of its stores until March 27, except in China

American tech giants have joined the White House in an intervention team to fight the impacts of the coronavirus. Silicon Valley is stepping up efforts to deal with the rapidly spreading pandemic, according to sources close to the group. The information was brought by Valor Econômico, through Dow Jones Newswires.

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The topics discussed among U.S. government officials and the firms representatives were to devise ways that allow citizens to be diagnosed without going to the doctor and how companies can work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as a top priority under the plan.

The global spread of COVID-19 made Facebook, Google, Twitter and Amazon implement remote working policies around the globe. Also, on Friday (13th) Apple has announced some measures against the new virus. All of its stores, except in China, will be closed until March 27. One of Apple’s biggest events for developers, the Worldwide Developers Conference will be held online. The company also announced a $15 million package to help affected countries. Apple is allowing its Apple Card customers to postpone their payments this month without penalties.

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Google parent company Alphabet is recommending that all employees in North America, Europe, Africa and the Middle East work remotely.

Twitter has made working from home mandatory for all workers globally. The company is also in communication with its San Francisco staffers after an employee from that office developed symptoms consistent with coronavirus.

Facebook is extending work from home guidance to all employees globally whose jobs allow them to do so, company spokesperson Anthony Harrison said in a statement to CNN.

Amazon is recommending that employees globally work from home if their jobs allow, a spokesperson said in a statement to CNN.