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COVID-19: Human rights organizations warn governments to monitor citizens

COVID-19 Human Rights Organizations

Ο COVID-19 has forced many governments to take extreme measures, such as monitoring them citizens. About 110 human rights organizations from all over the world they asked together in all governments to abide by the laws for protection human rights when using technologies surveillance. Many governments have begun using such methods to monitor individuals and populations in an effort to combat it. spreading of the new COVID-19.

Human rights organizations involved in the movement include Amnesty International, Algorithm Watch, the Australian Privacy Foundation, Digital Rights Watch, European Digital Rights, the Foundation for Information Policy Research, Human Rights Watch, and International Human Rights Watch. service for Human Rights and the World Wide Web Foundation.

“The use of surveillance technologies, such as access into a data location mobile phones, threatens privacy, freedom of expression and freedom of association, in ways that could violate human rights and downgrade public confidence. The meters they also pose a risk of discrimination and may harm already marginalized communities, ”the joint statement said.

"These are special conditions, but the law is for her protection human rights still apply. Indeed, the legal framework for human rights aims to ensure that different rights come into equilibrium to protect individuals and wider societies.

States cannot simply ignore rights, as it is its protection privacy and freedom of expression, in the name of tackling a public crisis health. On the contrary, the protection of human rights is essential because promotes public health and therefore helps fight COVID-19.

As part of this joint statement, human rights organizations are proposing conditions, which all governments should adhere to when using COVID-19 surveillance technologies:

In particular, the agencies emphasize that the surveillance measures adopted to combat pandemics must be absolutely legally and ensure that there will be no abuse. Any Surveillance measure should only be used during the COVID-19 crisis period and not continue to apply afterwards. The collection, preservation and use of personal data, including health data, should only be used to treat COVID-19 pandemics.


The Office of the Australian Intelligence Commissioner (OAIC) Had also talked about employers and his need to maintain one safe working environment for their employees during this critical period. You also need to be very careful when using and collecting data.

His government United Kingdom said he had contacted mobile phone companies to use their location data users. In this way, the authorities will be able to monitor the movements of citizens to understand how COVID-19 is spreading and to ensure that people comply with the measures. quarantine.

According to Deputy Commissioner Steve Wood, the analysis of generalized data on sites helps to address the COVID-19 crisis. When this data is anonymously, do not violate the law on data protection because they cannot be used to identify a particular person.

"Under these circumstances, the laws on confidentiality they are not violated as long as there are the appropriate safeguards ", he added.

Other countries, such as Brazil, Singapore, Israel, the China and South Korea are already monitoring user location data in an effort to combat the spread of COVID-19.


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