Apple and Google are cooperating on the development of a contact tracing tool for CoVID-19. Along with the covidnearyou.org and flatten.ca tools, it might be an idea to have some privacy people look seriously and deeply into the matter.
Also, with voluntary installation and data entry, is there sufficient integrity in the data to be useful?
Are there jurisdictional issues, as well?
What could possibly go wrong? Two companies with, at best, questionable privacy track records with tons of personal data? Pshaw!
Nothing to see here, move along, thank-you.
And add to the fact that it might be *Mandatory* in certain countries if you say wanted to:
return to work
go out in public
return to school
return to church, synagogue, temple, etc.
leave the house
so the app would know where you've been, who's been around you or who you've been around, where you went, how long you (or your phone was there), etc. and then if a person clicked on the "I've got coronavirus" button it would be able to alert any phone that you were around in a certain period that they might possibly been have exposed to someone who has it now.
No way that could be misused......... (sarcasm)
Are we really heading feet first into 1984?
But there's also now a really interesting protocol for contact tracing. (Which is an intriguing crypto application in regard to CoVID-19.)
I can't tell if the Google/Apple system uses DP-3T protocol, but the specifications do seem to go some ways to try to protect privacy ...
A fairly long article that raises all kinds of interesting questions about the practicality and utility of contact tracing: well worth the time to read it.
Also, a short overview in the RISKS-Forum Digest with some significant links to projects and specifications.
Apple and Google appear to be in conflict with the UK's NHS (National Health Service) over privacy policies regarding the base contact tracing app. Apple and Google want to forbid systems that use centralized servers, and also want to prevent background operation of contact tracing.
There are good privacy reasons for Apple and Google's positions, but there are also good public health reasons for the NHS requests.