Your Privacy Guide to Tech-Assisted Contact Tracing

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Here we outline general principles that should guide the consideration of any proposal for technology-assisted contact-tracing, or TACT.

In the last few weeks we have seen many proposals for technology-assisted “contact tracing.” Contact tracing is a longstanding public health technique that works by identifying everyone whom a sick person may have exposed, and helping them identify their risks and take appropriate action.

But traditional contact tracing techniques —carried out through in-person interviews —are labor-intensive, and often slow compared to a fast-moving pathogen like SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.The proposed systems would instead rely on location or proximity detection by mobile phones to selectively deliver alerts about potential exposures. While some of these systems may offer public health benefits, they may also cause significant risks to privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties. If such systems are to work, they must be widely adopted. But that won’t happen if they do not enjoy strong trust within the population.

To learn more about tech-assisted contact tracing and your privacy, click here: https://www.aclu.org/report/aclu-white-paper-principles-technology-assisted-contact-tracing

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