Big tech must walk privacy tightrope to make contact tracing a success

Following the news that France has urged Apple and Google to ease privacy rules on contact tracing;

Oliver Lockett, Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

“Apple and Google must stand firm on data privacy if they are to get their contact tracing apps to work in the best interest of everyone. The two companies must walk a tightrope when it comes to the data privacy of contact tracing application development. Too much data protection and they risk minimising effectiveness of life saving apps. However, too little protection and governments will struggle to get consumers to opt-in to the schemes with invasive data collection methods. The stakes are even higher when it involves critically sensitive healthcare data and could be a catastrophic data privacy screw up by big tech If not handled correctly.

“As the debate rages over the power to decide the best balance between user privacy and contact tracing efficacy, Apple and Google must ensure security measures are taken to protect personal data from being shared unnecessarily. There is a huge risk that contact tracing apps could easily be repurposed to enable invasive citizen surveillance. If this situation were to play out, the blame would be placed squarely on Google and Apple for allowing this to happen.”

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