Surveillance, Privacy, and App Tracking
Burris, S., de Guia, S., Gable, L., Levin, D.E., Parmet, W.E., Terry, N.P. (Eds.) (2021). COVID-19 Policy Playbook: Legal Recommendations for a Safer, More Equitable Future. Boston: Public Health Law Watch.
5 Pages Posted: 23 Mar 2021
Date Written: February 15, 2021
As the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the United States, American policymakers expressed optimism that digital contact tracing applications would mitigate the spread of the virus. Despite such hope, digital tracing tools have played virtually no role in reducing the transmission of COVID-19. This Chapter details the challenges faced and posed by digital contact tracing, exposes and criticizes its threats to stigmatized and marginalized populations, summarizes the lessons learned from our failed experiment with digital tracing in the context of COVID-19, and provides recommendations aimed at empowering the country to harness digital surveillance to stymie the spread of contagious disease when the next pandemic arrives. This paper was prepared as part of the COVID-19 Policy Playbook: Legal Recommendations for a Safer, More Equitable Future, a comprehensive report published by Public Health Law Watch in partnership with the de Beaumont Foundation and the American Public Health Association.
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