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Precursor to Dystopian Surveillance? COVID-19 Tracking Ramps Up at Facebook, Google, Apple

Precursor to Dystopian Surveillance? COVID-19 Tracking Ramps Up at Facebook, Google, Apple

One way for public health officials to fight the spread of coronavirus is through contact tracing, which literally means tracking down all the people an infected person came into contact within the days before they got sick.

Now Facebook is unveiling county by county maps of people with coronavirus symptoms with the tech giant set to begin running global surveys this week.

Other Silicon Valley heavy-weights like Google and Apple are working together on an app that uses Bluetooth technology to help track people who come into contact with someone who’s infected.

A person who has tested positive with COVID-19 can voluntarily sign up with a tracking application, and if their phone comes into contact with someone else who has the app, that person is alerted.

Apple and Google have already cleared the technology hurdle to make sure it works on both of their operating systems.

The identities of the people are reportedly kept anonymous. Still, it’s drawing privacy concerns across the political divide with some questioning whether this is all laying the groundwork for some sort of dystopian surveillance system.

For more on those privacy implications and how this new technology will work, CBN News’ “Faith Nation” anchors spoke with Sara Collins: policy counsel with the Public Knowledge Group in Washington. You can watch that interview ABOVE.

Collins wrote in an article that “…it isn’t hard to see a world in which using these applications becomes mandatory or functionally mandatory,” and that’s where privacy and personal freedoms become a greater concern.

FOR CBN NEWS CONTINUING COVERAGE ON COVID-19, CLICK HERE.

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