Are we heading for a “big brother” state?
Four weeks into the UK’s Coronavirus lockdown, we have reached the the “peak”. While the UK’s lockdown has slowed the spread of the virus and the increase is down to under 5% per day, more must be done before life can go back to normal.
One of the few ‘tools’ currently in Governments COVID-19 toolbox which has not yet been used, is Contact-tracing. When done in combination with a system of mass national testing, contact-tracing could be the game-changer the UK needs.
Contact-tracing, from the outset, may seem like a simple enough process but in reality, its not. Coronavirus has been reported to be especially easy to transmit and because of this contact-tracing will be difficult, maybe impossible.
Thankfully, in 2020, we have the technology to solve problems, with Coronavirus being no different. The UK Government announced that they have begun working on an “app”, although this app comes with major privacy concerns.
UK Governments “contact-tracing” App
As reported by BBC, LBC and most of the ‘Public service news’, the Government are currently creating their own Contact-tracing application. It was reported that the mobile app will work by harvesting the contact details which are stored in on your phone.
So ye, Government are expecting every one of us to install a Government created an app, that can scan all our contacts for their use! If you ask me, this is a step beyond too far, directly into a dystopian nightmare. I would rather not have a phone than submit my contact list TO GOVERNMENT!
Do the Government really need our contact details?
The most frustrating bit about this is that the technology absolutely does exists to make a virtually anonymous process of contact-tracing via a mobile phone, by using the devices IMEI.
Every device where you can install a Simcard and make calls, or use the internet, has an IMEI number. (dial *#06# and you can see yours in an instant!).
Android central describes what an IMEI is a lot better than me!
The IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) number is a unique set of 15 digits used on GSM phones to identify them. Because the SIM card is associated with the user and can be swapped from phone to phone, a method is needed to keep track of the hardware itself, and that’s why the IMEI was developed.
IMEI numbers exist to give every device an identity, this is how mobile phone providers are able to block (and unblock) a device when it is lost or stolen.
How Mobile Phones work
Mobile providers have the ability to track any device through-out their network, going from cell to cell (as seen in ‘line of duty’ and other cop shows), and it is this technology which could be used to more effectively trace and warn people in the UK who have been in contact with Coronavirus.
The stone-cold fact is that the UK (and global) mobile phone system is completely able to track where a device is at any time via its IMEI, as every time a phone is turned on it must be connected to a cell.
Why dont Government use IMEi’s to track people anonymously?
By tracking IMEI numbers, mobile providers (and police and anyone with access) can track devices wherever they go, which means that they are also able to tell what devices have been in the same location as another device, without the need to obtain ANY of our personal data, location information or our phones contact lists.
Of course, this wouldn’t be a Tory plan unless it was full of flaws, with the most obvious being that if the contact-tracing app works by scanning contacts, then it will only ever be able to tell who on your contact lists you have been in contact with, which could lead to many never being notified of risk.
COVID19 should not be used as the catalyst for the Tories techno-nightmare wet dreams. They do not need our personal details to defeat COVID19. The Government simply do not need out personal data and should never be asking for it, no matter how grave the situation!
I end todays blog today with a question, how much data do Government (aka Dominic Cummings) really need about us fight Coronavirus, and at what point will society stop and realise that the Conservative party and their current crypto-fascist leadership are using COVID19 as a way to remove as many of our personal freedoms as they can, while at the same time allowing as many people to die as they can!
How much is too much? At what point do we, society stand up and say NO MORE?
Catch me on Twitter @StevieCABZ
Rest in peace Grannie! I will make sure I never stop Tories! I do it for you!