If the People’s Republic of China had been truthful about COVID-19 originating in Wuhan, then maybe the world wouldn’t have to suffer through this pandemic.
Instead, the communist country covered it up, and as a result, it spread rapidly through every continent except Antarctica.
And it looks like it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better because the United States government is hatching this crazy plan to track social distancing in America.
“Social distancing” – it’s the new buzzword sweeping the globe. And it has proven to be highly effective against spreading disease.
While millions of Americans are becoming stir crazy from being cooped up in their homes, it’s imperative all of us stay home to keep the outbreak from spreading – especially to the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions.
But many people are ignoring the need for social distancing. Thousands of college students gathered at beaches in Florida for Spring Break, freely expressing the attitude that, “If I die, I die.”
And that’s why the United States government is hatching a plan to track social distancing by using smartphone location data.
And if their plan succeeds, you and I could be tracked no matter where we go for the rest of our lives.
The White House and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) wants Google, Facebook, and other big-tech companies to turn over location data to help monitor people’s compliance with social distancing guidelines.
The supposed good news is that they’re reportedly trying to “anonymize” the effort through a process known as “syndromic surveillance” – which allows them to monitor individuals without actually identifying them. Consider yourself just a dot on their screen.
The bad news is the federal government “will force the tech giants to weigh their commitments to user privacy against their desire to help combat a disease that has cost thousands of human lives and upended the global economy,” according to Dylan Byers of the Washington Post.
According to NBC, health officials have conducted two calls with representatives of major tech companies including Google, Facebook, Microsoft, IBM, Cisco, Amazon, Twitter, and Apple. A source at one tech company reportedly said that officials are “very serious” about the data-tracking plan.
Google confirmed last week its company is “exploring ways that aggregated anonymized location information could help in the fight against COVID-19. One example could be helping health authorities determine the impact of social distancing, similar to the way we show popular restaurant times and traffic patterns in Google Maps.”
And Facebook is reportedly already helping with healthcare companies and non-governmental organizations, although spokesman Andy Stone said, “There is no agreement to share people’s location data with governments.”
This is a slippery slope.
Yes, we want to save lives by enforcing social distancing guidelines. But the federal government is setting a very dangerous precedent about when to decide that privacy laws don’t matter.
Because once they get power, they never give it back.