Privacy and Coronavirus
There is no doubt that the begging of 2020, as never before, humanity as a whole, are living a common challenge facing an exceptional and unique situation: the expansion of the pandemic of the COVID19 has made everyone stop due to the risk of contagion.
Number of dead and affected are rapidly increasing and Spain is, currently, one of the most affected countries. I hope that this situation will make us rethink many of the things we do in our daily lives, both personally and professionally and make us wonder how we relate among ourselves and with the world around us.
Beyond these reflections, the world of privacy is not aside of this phenomenon and would like to focus here on two specific aspects.
In the need to control the mobility of the population, many governments, also in Spain, are establishing measures to obtain geolocation data collected by operators in providing its service: Order SND/207/2020 27 March, foresees sharing of anonymized data between the companies and government agencies to control the confinement of the population.
The Spanish Data Protection Authority itself went a little further and in a recent report it stated that data from the mobile phone of people infected can be processed in order to fight the pandemic, to know their whereabouts using geolocalization technologies.
It goes without saying that the right to life and health, will always be above data protection right. But it is also true that in these times of emergency, there is a common problem and against which everyone would be willing to give whatever it is, it is when privacy has been more exposed and threatened.
It happened with 9/11 attacks when in the name of security, many privacy rights where lost to never come back. As one of 7 Privacy by Design Principles says, it shouldn’t be about health or privacy, it should be how we make both interests compatible.
With the widespread closure of businesses and companies, they have had to explore and implement, often in haste and without a specific plan, new ways to work and communicate: remote access from the home with domestic networks, videochat, and cloud services to store and share data… cybercriminals are taking advantage of the situation and their attacks have increased significantly confinement.
Privacy and Coronavirus
In times like these, companies and organizations are understanding that full digitization is irreversible and essential, but all these process has to be made with proper guarantees in order to make sure that security and confidentiality is granted. Privacy and coronavirus must be able to coexist.
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