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IPFS News Link • Surveillance

Privacy Advocates Sound Alarms Over Coronavirus Surveillance

•, Benjamin Powers

As the coronavirus pandemic spreads across Asia, nations leveraged significant surveillance networks to trace the virus's spread and forced governments around the world to weigh the trade-offs of public health and privacy for millions of people. Now, recent reports say the U.S. government is in talks with controversial surveillance and data gathering companies to enlist them in addressing the coronavirus crisis, signaling an escalation in the use of surveillance tools. 

Last week the Wall Street Journal reported the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) enlisted Palantir, a data scraping and modeling behemoth that works with law enforcement and other government security agencies, to model outbreak data. Palantir and Clearview AI, the facial recognition startup that acquired billions of facial images through public web scraping, have been in contact with state governments about tracking people who came in contact with infected individuals.