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 COVID-19 stokes fear of the surveillance society

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COVID-19 stokes fear of the surveillance society Vide
PostSubject: COVID-19 stokes fear of the surveillance society   COVID-19 stokes fear of the surveillance society Icon_minitimeTue Mar 24, 2020 10:09 pm

Reluctant to heed government advice about "social distancing," Brits and other UK residents were last night hit by tough new rules on freedom of movement. People cannot leave their homes unless they need to buy groceries, exercise or – for those designated "key workers" – travel to work. Designed to curb the spread of COVID-19, the regime is the most draconian the UK has ever known. Telecom operators could feasibly play a vital role in enforcing it.
BT, the UK's former state-owned telecom incumbent, last week offered to share location data with government authorities battling the deadly virus, according to newspaper reports. In theory, its technology could highlight areas where people have gathered in violation of the rules. If constraints on providing data in real time can be overcome, police could be dispatched to break up crowds.
The UK is not the only country where network technology could help to enforce restrictions on movement. In the US, the Trump administration is said to be in similar discussions with technology firms about access to location data. In Italy, Vodafone appears to have already delivered "heat map" data to authorities in the COVID-19-stricken region of Lombardy. Telekom Austria is working with a startup called Invenium whose algorithms can be used to illustrate people movements between locations.
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