Connect with us

Tech

Coronavirus: Apple, Google to ban location tracking in joint contact tracing system – Global News

Published

on


Apple Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google on Monday said they would ban the use of location tracking in apps that use a new contact tracing system the two are building to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Apple and Google, whose operating systems power 99% of smart phones, said last month they would work together to create a system for notifying people who have been near others who have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. The companies plan to allow only public health authorities to use the technology.

Both companies said privacy and preventing governments from using the system to compile data on citizens was a primary goal. The system uses Bluetooth signals from phones to detect encounters and does not use or store GPS location data.


READ MORE:
Consent for coronavirus tracing apps must be ‘meaningful’, Canada’s privacy watchdog says

But the developers of official coronavirus-related apps in several U.S. states told Reuters last month it was vital they be allowed to use GPS location data in conjunction with the new contact tracing system to track how outbreaks move and identify hotspots.

Story continues below advertisement

The Apple-Google decision to not allow GPS data collection with their contact tracing system will require public health authorities that want to access GPS location to rely on what Apple and Google have described as unstable, battery-draining workarounds.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

Alternatives likely would miss some encounters because iPhones and Android devices turn off Bluetooth connections after some time for battery-saving and other reasons unless users remember to re-activate them.






6:53
Coronavirus outbreak: Privacy and public health protection can be achieved with the right contact tracing app: commissioner


Coronavirus outbreak: Privacy and public health protection can be achieved with the right contact tracing app: commissioner

But some apps said they planned to stick to their own approaches.

Software company Twenty, which developed the state of Utah’s Healthy Together contact tracing app with both GPS and Bluetooth, said on Monday the app “operates effectively” without the new Apple-Google tool.

“If their approach can be more effective than our current solution, we’ll eagerly incorporate their features into our existing application, provided it meets the specifications of current and prospective public health partners,” Twenty said.


READ MORE:
Alberta launches ABTraceTogether app to improve contact tracing, fight COVID-19 spread

Canada’s Alberta province, which does not collect GPS data, said it has no plans to adopt the Apple-Google system for its ABTraceTogether app.

Privacy experts have warned that any cache of location data related to health issues could make businesses and individuals vulnerable to being ostracized if the data is exposed.

Story continues below advertisement

Apple and Google also said Monday they will allow only one app per country to use the contact system, to avoid fragmentation and encourage wider adoption. The companies said they would, however, support countries that opt for a state or regional approach, and that U.S. states will be allowed to use the system.






2:01
Alberta launches ABTraceTogether app to improve COVID-19 contact tracing


Alberta launches ABTraceTogether app to improve COVID-19 contact tracing

Britain will start testing its own COVID-19 tracing app on the Isle of Wight on Tuesday.

It has taken a different approach from other European countries by processing data centrally rather than solely on the devices themselves, where a higher level of privacy can be guaranteed.

(Reporting by Stephen Nellis and Paresh Dave in San Francisco. Editing by Tom Brown and Leslie Adler)

With files from Reuters’ Paul Sandle

© 2020 Reuters

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Tech

Ubisoft shakes up executive ranks, begins process to deal with harassment – GuelphToday

Published

on


TORONTO — A Paris-based game software developer with offices in several Canadian cities is making changes in response to complaints against several executives, including a vice-president based in Toronto.

Ubisoft says Maxime Beland, its Toronto-based vice-president of editorial, has resigned and another unidentified employee in Toronto has been fired.

Tommy Francois, a Paris-based vice-president of editorial and creative services, has been placed on disciplinary leave.

The two vice-presidents were part of a creative team that set the tone and direction of Ubisoft’s various games, which include the “Assassin’s Creed” franchise.

Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot says in a public letter posted online that he has decided to “revise the composition” of its editorial department and transform its human resource processes.

Guillemot says Ubisoft will begin holding online sessions on Monday, moderated by external facilitators, in order to collect suggestions for improvement.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 5, 2020.

The Canadian Press

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Tech

Ubisoft shakes up executive ranks, begins process to deal with harassment – Kamsack Times

Published

on


TORONTO — A Paris-based game software developer with offices in several Canadian cities is making changes in response to complaints against several executives, including a vice-president based in Toronto.

Ubisoft says Maxime Beland, its Toronto-based vice-president of editorial, has resigned and another unidentified employee in Toronto has been fired.

article continues below

Tommy Francois, a Paris-based vice-president of editorial and creative services, has been placed on disciplinary leave.

The two vice-presidents were part of a creative team that set the tone and direction of Ubisoft’s various games, which include the “Assassin’s Creed” franchise.

Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot says in a public letter posted online that he has decided to “revise the composition” of its editorial department and transform its human resource processes.

Guillemot says Ubisoft will begin holding online sessions on Monday, moderated by external facilitators, in order to collect suggestions for improvement.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 5, 2020.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Tech

Another COVID-19 case resolved in Sarnia-Lambton – Sarnia Observer

Published

on


The Lambton Public Health office on Exmouth Street in Point Edward is shown in this photo.

File photo / The Observer

The number of active COVID-19 cases in Sarnia-Lambton was again three, after another case was resolved Saturday, public health officials reported.

The number of resolved cases was 258, out of 286 total confirmed cases in Sarnia-Lambton over the course of the coronavirus pandemic.

There have been 25 deaths in Sarnia-Lambton from the disease, but none since June 6.

Of the 12,960 test results received, 2.2 per cent have been positive for COVID-19, public health officials said.

tkula@postmedia.com

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending