Enhanced support: the CNIL selects 3 digital companies with strong potential

11 May 2023

The CNIL has selected the companies Contentsquare, Hugging Face and Lifen to benefit from enhanced support over several months. It will provide them with legal and technical responses tailored to their projects in order to guide them towards full GDPR compliance, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence.

A strong demand for support

Last February, the CNIL launched a call for applications to provide its support  to innovative companies, involved in a rapid evolution of their activities and whose business model is based on data processing.

This first session of ‘enhanced support’ was very successful: more than 40 companies applied, with a wide range of activities (artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, experience analytics, e-health, voice biometrics, sound detectors, etc.).

The CNIL reviewed the applications received on the basis of five criteria:

  • the implementation by the company of innovative products, services or processes;
  • strong economic development;
  • the impact of personal data processing on individuals;
  • commitment to GDPR compliance; and
  • the relevance of legal, societal or ethical issues raised.

The three selected companies

The CNIL has selected, among the candidates, three innovative and fast-growing companies that will benefit from this new support offer:

  • CONTENTSQUARE: this French company, member of the Next40, provides its clients with an AI-based service platform (SaaS) that collects and analyses user data during their online journey (e.g. via mouse tracking or clicks), in order to improve the user experiences of private or public websites. This solution is used by more than one million websites.
  • HUGGING FACE: this high-tech company founded by French people has developed the most widely used community platform for collaboration on AI and machine learning. This open community is at the heart of discussions on new legal issues raised by AI.
  • LIFEN: this French company simplifies access to medical data for healthcare actors such as health institutions and private practitioners. With an activity focused on interoperability and automatic language structuring, Lifen aims to develop new solutions to apply AI to clinical data analysis in order to enable the completion of studies, evaluations or research in health field for health professionals.

The ambition to be as close as possible to the needs of professionals

These 3 companies will be supported for several months by the legal and technical teams of the CNIL on the conditions of implementation of their data processing, or their projects, in the light of their obligations related to data protection.

This support will be structured around three main modalities:

  • prompt legal and technical support: answers to legal or technical questions, training and assistance in carrying out DPIAs, recommendations on cyber security, etc.);
  • a compliance review of the data processing operations, which will result in the issuing of legal and technical recommendations;
  • awareness-raising actions on data protection issues (aimed at employees and/or managers).

Companies that have not been selected for this first session will be directed to other CNIL support tools or to other interlocutors. They will also be able to apply for a next session and benefit from the other instruments already offered by the CNIL, in particular:

  • general and sectoral support: publications on cnil.fr of practical guides, reference frameworks, guidelines, recommendations to assist professionals in a sector, in particular in artificial intelligence;
  • individual support: written responses to individual requests for advice, organisation of meetings with the CNIL’s services, telephone hotlines;
  • innovative support: AIPD tool (open source software PIA facilitating the conduct and formalisation of AIPD), MOOC L'Atelier RGPD (free training tool accessible to all those wishing to train on GDPR), a regulatory sandbox.

“Enhanced support” and “sandbox”, what differences?

Enhanced support

  • All themes are possible
  • Data processing projects or already implemented related to the company’s core business
  • Varied support (prompt legal and technical support, a compliance review of the data processing operations, awareness-raising actions)
  • There is no need to raise new legal issues


  • Each sandbox focuses on a single theme (digital health in 2021, digital tools in education in 2022)
  • Projects in the design phase
  • Resolution of specific legal issues
  • Interest in new legal issues to clarify the CNIL doctrine