COVID19 Contact tracing apps, a fair bargain for public health?

Guest: Konstantinos Komaitis

It is hard to think of COVID19 and technology, and not think of contact tracing apps.  They have garnered not just attention and hope as a tool in the process to manage the epidemic, but also angst from privacy advocates and civil liberties watchdogs. Our guest in this episode is Konstantinos Komaitis, Senior Director, Policy Strategy and Development at the Internet Society.

Increasingly, governments and private enterprises are working on, or have already launched, contact tracing apps that leverage the ubiquity of mobile devices and built-in features such as bluetooth, to facilitate the time-consuming data collection aspects of traditional contact tracing processes. Tech giants Apple and Google have waded in, announcing a collaboration to help governments and health agencies collect data in their fight against the pandemic. Do we have to sacrifice privacy and civil liberties in the name of public health? Or is the issue far more nuanced?

As a lawyer and international policy and governance expert Konstantinos brings a great perspective to help us parse the issues on a decision many of us will soon have to make: To download the app or not.

Hosted by: Alexa Raad & Leslie Daigle

Referenced material:

Other episodes in the arc:

  • The 411 on Contact Tracing Apps, with Patrick Howell O’Neill (forthcoming)
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