Neweurope On Thursday, the European Commission published guidance to ensure full data protection standards of consent-based Covid-19 tracing applications, ensuring that location data is not processed, unless the user opts-in.
The development of Covid-19 apps aims at assisting countries with lifting their lockdown measures through tracking and alerting people who have been in proximity for a certain duration to an infected person, in order to get tested or to self-isolate.
Their capacity to record contacts that a person may not notice or remember, the so-called creation of “memory maps” is considered to be one of their strong assets. The processing of individuals location data “is not necessary nor recommended for the purpose of contact tracing,” according to the toolbox issued on Wednesday.
<p>To be implemented, national apps have four preconditions; to be “voluntary, approved by the national health authority, privacy-preserving and personal data is securely encrypted, and dismantled as soon as no longer needed.” Once the pandemic is over, the conditions foresee that the app should be deactivated automatically and all remaining personal data and proximity data should be erased.</p>