Could cell phone tracking slow the spread of COVID-19?
Government officials across the U.S. are usi...
We take a look at the use of cellphone tracking and how it is important to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Government officials across the U.S. are using location data from millions of cellphones in a bid to better understand the movements of Americans during the coronavirus pandemic and how they may be affecting the spread of the disease. The apps have already proven effective at containing and limiting the spread of the disease in countries such as Singapore and China. The UK is aiming to follow suit, we explore this scheme below.
The invasiveness has varied from country to country, for example; Israel passed emergency laws to allow its spy agency to tap into people's phones without a warrant. South Korea is broadcasting alerts with patients' age, gender, and last location. Other countries are corralling anonymised, aggregated location data to track people's movements in a more general way.
The UK is looking into the possibility of identifying people with the deadly virus and consequently tracking their movements through location data, this GPS tracking would allow officials to track sick people and who they have been in contact with, this method was proven to be effective during the SARS and Ebola outbreaks. Contact tracking allows ‘close contacts’ of infected people to be identified by health authorities, quarantined and screened for the disease.
These GPS tracking services can also be used to track whether people are adhering to social distancing rules that have been enforced by the government.
Due to the highly infectious nature of the disease, it is imperative that people maintain social distancing and follow all government advice, this app will allow people breaking these rules to be fined and penalized.
Now that billions of people have access to a smartphone, tracking is easier than ever. However, it poses the question of; is this ethical? Security experts have said that the plan is an invasion of privacy however this is overpowered by the fact that it may be necessary for the country to survive this global pandemic. These experts stress that tracking is a temporary measure only, so people can be assured that their safety and security is not at risk.
How you can slow the spread of coronavirus:
Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
Wash your hands as soon as you get home
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
Find out the key information about COVID-19 here.
The Ultimate Enterprise Technology & AI & Cyber LIVE Event
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Vice President at CGI
Sunil has over 20 years of experience in consulting and helping energy and oil and gas clients transform into digital and sustainability leaders. He has also helped organisations across the energy, oil and gas, chemicals, renewables, and manufacturing industries realise business value from their investments using cloud, artificial/augmented intelligence, data science, internet of things, industry 4.0, robotic process automation, cybersecurity, and hyper-automation.
He has substantial experience in the information technology industry gained working at IBM Global Business Services, KPMG Management Consulting, Sapient, and Infosys.
Chief Information Officer at Department of the Air Force
Lauren Barrett Knausenberger is the Chief Information Officer for the Department of the Air Force, including the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force. She leads two directorates and supports 20,000 cyber operations, and supports personnel around the globe with a portfolio valued at $17 billion.
She provides oversight of the Air Force’s Information Technology portfolio, including the Information Technology investment strategy from networks to cloud computing, Enterprise policies, information resources management, IT innovation initiatives, information assurance, and related matters for the Department of the Air Force.
CEO at Colt Technology Services
Appointed CEO in May 2020, Keri is responsible for executing Colt’s strategy, which centres around transforming the way the world works through the power of connectivity. Before becoming CEO, Keri was Colt’s Chief Commercial Officer (CCO), leading global teams across sales, presales and marketing. Passionate about promoting Inclusion and Diversity, she also leads Colt’s Diversity Council to ensure Colt is a business where everyone feels they can bring their true selves to work. We look forward to hearing her insights.
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