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03/24/2020

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will

I agree with this. Smartphones can be very helpful in finding people who could potentially cause trouble. I can't help but think what would happen if people knew about this contact tracing and found a way to bypass it?

Hunter Brooks

I agree that smartphones have become more popularly used within the past couple decades, and with that being said they could be used as an efficient way of finding things about people, but the question is who would know this information, and is it a breach of our rights?

Carlos Berio

I agree that smartphone surveillance would be extremely beneficial to the tracking and erasing of COVID-19. Although in “How Surveillance Could Save Lives Amid a Public Health Crisis” there is evident indications that the information garnered from these studies would be abused later down the road for non COVID-19 purposes. As Sidney Fussel mentions in this article it is stated that the legality of interfering with the fourth amendment's right of privacy is already in question during the decision making process. Jake Williams a former member of the NSA hacking units argues that of course he would want to give the government whatever they need but he can’t simply do that as it has led to abuse of said information and will probably lead to additional abuse if allowed. For this reason I can agree that smartphones would be useful to stop the pandemic, I think in the long run allowing additional cell phone surveillance will do more harm than good.

deshawn

I agree with the ideas in the article “How Surveillance Could Save Lives Amid a Public Crisis” on how they explained their plan on the use of smartphones. Although I do not agree upon the aspect of using all this personal data if not necessary. Such as Facebook and tech companies using users/customers past locations to map the spread of the disease. “White House officials are asking tech companies for more insight into our social networks and travel patterns. Facebook created a disease mapping tool that tracks the spread of disease by aggregating user travel patterns.” The article also included that lawyers and academics suggested the increase f the geofencing capacity. Geofencing is the use of GPS or RFID technology to create a virtual geographic boundary, enabling software to trigger a response when a mobile device enters or leaves an area. As mentioned in the article that the taking of personal data and searching it is wrong and direct violation of our fourth amendment. And the government has a history of overstepping and disrespecting boundaries. “Police databases generally include only those suspected or convicted of a crime. But a disease surveillance database could include lots of people who did nothing other than sit next to an infected person on a flight. It is deeply troubling but could become a necessity in urgent times. “The problem is, I don't actually believe that that’s where the use of the data ends,” Williams said. “I would challenge you to find any government surveillance program, for that matter, that hasn't suffered a large number of abuses.” I agree with what Williams said because it is not the bystander’s full responsibility for being exposed to the disease.

Matthew Loccisano

Currently we are living in the middle of a health crisis and many steps are being taken to ensure the safety and stop of the spread of Corona virus. One of these steps that have been recommended to be used is contact tracing through the use of our cell phones. This will allow government officials access to where you have been and who you may have contacted since you contracted the disease. Although this is a very compelling proposition as a means to flatten the curve, the question that needs to be asked is does it allow the government too much access into our privacy? Many people say yes and I happen to agree with them. I feel this would be a violation of our 4th amendment rights which protect us from unwarranted search and seizure. It has already been seen how companies have taken advantage of certain aspects of our privacy before and if we allow this level of a privacy breach it will be very hard to ever gain that aspect of privacy back. In my opinion this is a dangerous precedent to set and could ultimately lead to our phones being used against us much more than we are aware of.

Matthew Loccisano

Matthew Loccisano
Blog Post

Currently we are living in the middle of a health crisis and many steps are being taken to ensure the safety and stop of the spread of Coronavirus. One of these steps that have been recommended to be used is contact tracing through the use of our cell phones. This will allow government officials access to where you have been and who you may have contacted since you contracted the disease. Although this is a very compelling proposition as a means to flatten the curve, the question that needs to be asked is does it allow the government too much access into our privacy? Many people say yes and I happen to agree with them. I feel this would be a violation of our 4th amendment rights which protect us from unwarranted search and seizure. It has already been seen how companies have taken advantage of certain aspects of our privacy before and if we allow this level of a privacy breach it will be very hard to ever gain that aspect of privacy back. In my opinion this is a dangerous precedent to set and could ultimately lead to our phones being used against us much more than we are aware of.

Zylazjah Hicks

I agree that smartphones have became popular over the years. They could also be used as an efficient way of finding things about people. I feel this would be a violation of our rights which protect us from unwarranted search. It has already been seen how companies have taken advantage of certain aspects of our privacy before and if we allow this level of a privacy breach it will be very hard to ever gain that aspect of privacy back. I also feel that they shouldn’t be able to to these types of things because they are pretty much invading our privacy. We didn’t sign any types of contracts to say that they could do anything that their doing. Also later in they can eventually be able to use our phones against us.

Tyrell Minor

In ‘How Surveillance Could Save Lives Amid a Public Health Crisis’ by Sidney Fussell, the author writes about how personal data collected from civilians could be used to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Fussell also writes about how the collection and usage of this data could be dangerous, and infringes on the rights of the civilian.

1. Contact Tracing is the process of determining the identity of those who have been in contact with an infected individual. Epidemiologists interview an infected person to determine their every action, who they interacted with, where they were, etcetera. Contact Tracing could be conducted in one’s cellphone via use of the location services commonly found in phones. I believe the location data of infected and possibly infected individuals should be used by the government or a high level epidemiology office of some kind. The data collection should continue until the virus is contained, and the epidemic is nearing its end. Other people might oppose my opinion because they don’t want or trust the government with their information.

2. Fussell introduces additional commentators in a way that builds credibility by explaining their most important achievements or careers such as “Jake Williams, a cybersecurity expert and former member of the NSA’s hacking unit” and “Cameron Browne, a mathematical biologist at the University of Louisiana studying the virus’s spread in China.”

3. The government can’t be trusted with our personal data, as told by Jake Williams when he said “I'd love to give the federal government all the latitude that they deserve, but the reality is that [we've seen] abuse after abuse after abuse.” I do not believe there is any truly viable way to mitigate the power of the federal government once it gets its hands on our personal data.

4. I do believe there is a difference between data used for ad campaigns and data used for pandemic prevention. The difference being that search engines only gather what you look up, and sometimes your location, while governments would gather your location, what you look up, and more.

Chaston Pierce

1.) In the midst of a goalball pandemic many people including government officials are looking for new methods to find potentially infected people, and quarantine them. In addition to this the people that have been in contact with the potentially infected people should be notified of the situation, and try to stay semi isolated in order to limit the spread of disease. One of the ideas to help aid the situation was contact tracking. Contact tracking is tracking the movement of a identified or potential COVID-19 carrier through geo tracking on their phone. This would allow people that are in the vicinity of the infected person to be notified, therefore telling them to self quarantine and helping to stop the spread of the disease. The large problem with this idea is that the government could gather private information about a person, and risk breaking the fourth amendment. My solution to this is two answer these three questions. What data is used, who gets to use it, and how long will it be collected? I think that the location tracking of peoples smartphones without personal information about the tracked people would be fine. And the CDC should be the ones to gather the information to make maps of highly trafficked areas. Also I think if a known subject is out all of the phones in the area around should get a notification that they may have been exposed. This data should only be used and collected until the end of this pandemic, then the data should be destroyed and the collection should be halted. I don't think that your identity should affect this situation at all, mainly because no one will know the identity of the person who the phone is connected to. Lots of people would not agree with my solution to this problem mainly because the government has lied to us before so they would be hesitant to trust them with highly sensitive information.
2.) Using very sensitive information that comes from a smartphone that people use every single day is a very bold stamen and an almost outlandish idea intern there are many naysayers for the idea. Fussell decides to introduce the arguments from some of these naysayers in order to get a second opinion. To establish credibility to all of the people that he used to write his article, Fussell introduced them with their occupation and credentials in their respective fields to help show their qualifications for their side of the argument. Even though Fussell is writing about objections to his own argument, he still has to listen to each one with fairness and an open mind. Fussell does this very well, instead of just objecting the argument he tries to see it from there side and addresses it as so, then he gives his rebuttal. An example of this is when Jake Williams said "we've seen abuse after abuse after abuse," and Fussell responds with "It's deeply troubling, but could become necessary in urgent times." Fussell addresses what the previous person said respecting their argument, then gives his rebuttal.
3.) The main and recurring issue with using peoples phones to track the spread of the disease is the gathering of huge amounts of private information, and the thought of what the government might do with it. An example of this fear of the government not properly using the personal information comes from Jake Williams. Williams said "The problem is, I don't actually believe that that’s where the use of the data ends." This is going back to the first question showing that people don't trust the government to only use the data for the necessary research and that after the pandemic is over, they will still use it for their own personal research. Many people will just say "Who cares" and "They already have all of our information anyway." The problem would be that if this much personal information got leaked to an organization that could use it for harmful purposes, then the entire nation would be at risk. To help prevent this from happening the three questions at the top have to be answered and implemented. Also the information can't just go straight to the government, it would have to be checked over and made sure nothing bad could come from an accidental leak.
4.) An argument that one might make about the collection of data and how it doesn't matter is how google uses your search history to predict what you might look up or give you ads for recently searched products. However these are all harmless algorithms that can't take your personal data. The government's tracking would be way more extensive to the point where they knew where you were every second of every day. This does sound very scary but I think that if there are correct policies in place, this could help more than it would hurt.

Noelle Whitener

Sidney Fussell, in How Surveillance Could Save Lives Amid a Public Health Crisis, explains how technology can be used to identify people affected by the Coronavirus. He includes both sides of the argument that technology can be used to identify people affected by the Coronavirus and that it can be dangerous as it could give away people’s personal data. Fussel believes technology should be used to gather information to help stop the spread of the Coronavirus. I believe technology and tracking devices for the Coronavirus should not be used, as it can take personal data away from people which goes against their rights in the Fourth Amendment.

1. Contact tracing identifies people that an infected person has been around. People studying the disease identify patient zero and interview them on their symptoms and who they came into contact with. This helps people studying the disease by showing them who has come in contact with the disease. All of this is figured out with the help of technology. Data should only be collected if it will directly help stop the spread of COVID-19. Information such as addresses and current location should be allowed to be used as it can be used to show where COVID-19 is present. It can show hot spots and allow disease researchers to see where the virus is and just how much an impact it has had. Only people studying the disease and people who are trying to help stop the spread should be allowed to see and use personal data. Data collection should only continue as long as it needs to, and it should stop when it is no longer needed to help track the virus. People have a right to their personal data, and it should not be used after the Coronavirus passes. Everyone has different opinions on how their personal data should or should not be used.

2. In order to show their credibility, Fussell introduces these naysayer arguments by stating their credentials first. For example, for Jake Williams he states, “ a cybersecurity expert and former member of the NSA’s hacking unit” before explaining his argument against collecting personal data. Fussel is fair as he weaves both sides of the argument into his article, despite his own beliefs. He mentions another’s beliefs before going against them inputting his views.

3. The problem in collecting huge amounts of data is that too much information could be collected and kept and analyzed long after it is needed. Fussell included a quote by Jake Williams stating, “The problem is, I don't actually believe that that’s where the use of the data ends.” Big companies love using people’s personal data to benefit themselves. It also makes it a lot easier for law enforcement when trying to solve a crime or prove something right or wrong. However, people do not want their personal data to be shared unless necessary. The abuse of federal emergency surveillance powers could be mitigated if they respected people’s personal data more. If they do manage to get a hold of a ton of personal data, then they should not share it or use it inappropriately. The entirety of the United States should not have access to everyone’s personal information, as it goes against people’s privacy in the Fourth Amendment.

4. There is definitely a difference between using personal data for ad campaigns and tracking clusters of disease. Disease is much more crucial, and people would be more willing to share their data if they knew it was going to be used to help stop the spread. More people would be willing to give their consent for the government to take their data than they would be for an ad campaign. The other strategy that could help isolate the virus would just be finding patient zero and contact tracing. This is less efficient and more time consuming as it requires patience and time to find the first person that came in contact with the virus. Smartphone technology allows tracking to be done universally at a much faster pace.

Cy Stavros

In How Surveillance Could Save Lives Amid a Public Health Crisis, Sydney Fussell argues that surveillance could be used to benefit the public wellbeing by tracking the spread of the Coronavirus in the United States. Personally, I find this argument is overly optimistic in several of our nation's supposed hallmark qualities, particularly our virtue to respect (and not abuse) our promises in human rights, as well as our overall will to actually curb COVID-19 cases and prevent loss of life and suffering when possible.
To begin, it should be addressed that the United States has never been exactly the shining land of freedom we pretend it is. It goes without saying the enslavement, segregation, and discrimination of black lives has left an ugly legacy that still is present today, as well as the ever-present gender inequality, homophobia, and transphobia. To dial in one particular pillar of the bill of rights we pretend to uphold (but never really do) is the right to privacy, and freedom from surveillance. Though the government has wire-tapped, "tailed," and interrogated the likes of MLK and Malcolm X since the moment they posed a legitimate threat to the status quo, in the post-9/11 world this type of surveillance has become more and more intrusive with the rise of electronic messaging, social media, and GPS tracking. Even if you don't pose a considerable challenge to the way things are, there's a chance your information could be documented for your relations to those that do, and an almost certainty your information is being tracked by marketing software in order to advertise whatever you're most likely to buy. This just goes to show there truly isn't any reason that more data shared with the US government wouldn't just go to fatten the already massive pile of violated privacy rights. If of our history of violation after violation is enough to sway you, there quite literally is a new bipartisan surveillance bill in the process of being passed as we speak, the EARN IT Act, which would render any instant messaging at all privy to the government.
Secondly, it should be pretty clear at this point that unlike many other nations, the United States was so reliant on the economy that we couldn't stand to put in place a shorter "hard quarantine" that has cost very few lives, and has instead opted for this very flexible quarantine that has seen rates soar above any other nation. Quite clearly, this disregard for life among those in power at state and federal levels shows that the government really isn't to set on minimizing harm, so much as they are dead set on minimizing economic harm. Why then, would we give an uncaring government all this private information it has no will to use in the way of minimizing Coronavirus deaths.
In conclusion, I think the public should be skeptical of any infringement on privacy rights, and certainly rights rescinded in the middle of a crisis to distract potential blowback. As for this proposal of a "temporary" forfeit of our rights, I'm not buying it. We've seen this kind of power abused time and again, and it's almost never to the benefit of the common man.

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