Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

CC Cover Feature Illustration June 2020COVID-19 is poised to overtake the post-9/11 government surveillance surge—what role will companies choose to play in this? Digital contact tracing apps are being used and developed around the world with the goal of reducing the spread of COVID-19 and thus saving lives. At their base, such tools track and inform people when they have been near a COVID-positive person by gathering location data using Bluetooth or GPS on their smartphones. Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan were some of the earliest state adopters, having built up their digital disaster-response infrastructure following the outbreaks of SARS and MERS, but Germany, France, the U.K., and the U.S.—among many others—are on their heels. While there is some concern that the promise of digital contact tracing apps is overblown, some early research suggests that it can help—particularly where adoption of the technology is widespread and one part of an overall approach that includes extensive testing.

While some states are creating tools of their own, still more are partnering with companies to develop the technology—and tech companies are rising to the occasion. Thus far, digital contact tracing tools vary widely in their consideration of the human rights of the populations they are designed to serve. This article discusses international human rights law during a pandemic, the human rights considerations of digital contact tracing, and recommendations for companies seeking to design their technology in way that promotes, rather than harms, human rights.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Benefits of a Digital Membership:

  • Free access to 3 articles* every 30 days
  • Access to the entire ALM network of websites
  • Unlimited access to the ALM suite of newsletters
  • Build custom alerts on any search topic of your choosing
  • Search by a wide range of topics

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

Law Firms Mentioned


General Counsel Summit (GCS) 2020Event

General Counsel Summit is the premier event for in-house counsel, hosting esteemed legal minds from all sectors of the economy.

Get More Information

General Counsel Conference 2020Event

General Counsel Conference addresses trends in regulatory, data protection, tech management, legal operations, and leadership.

Get More Information

Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL) 2020Event

WIPL is the original global forum facilitating women-to-women exchange on leadership and legal issues.

Get More Information

Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL.UK)Event

Women, Influence & Power in Law UK (WIPL.UK) offers an opportunity for unprecedented exchange with senior female in-house lawyers.

Get More Information

Banking Litigation & Regulation Forum 2020Event

Delivers the key insights and practical solutions to acutely address the complex minefield of UK banking litigation & regulation.

Get More Information

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.