Project host Waleed Aly would rather the lockdown CONTINUE than have the government introduce a tracking app to control the spread of COVID-19
- The Project co-host Waleed Aly has spoken out against a mobile tracking app
- Australia is considering using a Singapore-designed program Trace Together
- It would collect data on who an individual has come into close contact with
- Aly said he the idea of a government tracking device scared ‘the hell out of me’
- Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID
The Project host Waleed Aly has spoken out strongly against the idea of monitoring the movements of Australians through a government mobile phone app.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy are open to the concept of using Singapore technology to track the everyday movements of individuals to combat the spread of coronavirus.
This would effectively enable the lockdowns to end sooner.
Under the proposal, Australians would voluntarily install an app on their phone that would be able to determine how many others they had come into close contact with.
Television personality Waleed Aly (pictured with wife Susan Carland) has spoken out strongly against the idea of monitoring the movements of Australians through a mobile phone app
Should they test positive to COVID-19, health authorities would have access to the data from the Trace Together app designed in Singapore, a much more authoritarian society than Australia.
Aly, a Gold Logie-winning co-host of The Project, suggested the app would be an unnecessary infringement on civil liberties and privacy.
‘It’s the three words that put together scare the hell out of me: government tracking device,’ he told Network 10.
‘And this came out of Singapore, right? That’s an autocracy.’
Mr Morrison insisted on Wednesday Australians would not be forced to sign up to the app, with the data only accessed in circumstances ‘where someone had coronavirus’.
Nonetheless, he talked up the idea of using surveillance technology to monitor the movements of individuals in a bid to lift the lockdowns sooner.
Aly, a Gold Logie-winning co-host of The Project, suggested the app would be an unnecessary infringement on civil liberties and privacy. ‘It’s the three words that put together scare the hell out of me: government tracking device,’ he said
Prime Minister Scott Morrison is open to the adopting a Singapore-design app, Trace Together, to monitor the movements of those who have tested positive to coronavirus
‘We could trace people’s contacts quicker and tracked down the coronavirus faster and save people’s lives, which meant we could open our economy up more,’ he told Perth radio station 6PR.
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA: 6,449
New South Wales: 2,886
South Australia: 433
Western Australia: 532
Australian Capital Territory: 103
Northern Territory: 28
TOTAL CASES: 6,449
The Prime Minister said privacy would also be worth sacrificing.
‘I mean, there are things that we might not ordinarily do,’ he said.
‘But in these circumstances, to keep people safe, to save lives and to save people’s livelihoods and get them back to work.
‘If that tool is going to help people do that, then this may be one of the, one of the sacrifices we need to make, we’re working on the privacy issues very hard.’
Singapore, where about 20 per cent of people have signed up to the app, has provided coding information to Australia for development.
Professor Murphy told a New Zealand parliamentary hearing that Australia is ‘very keen to use it perhaps even more extensively than Singapore’.
He acknowledged there were privacy concerns.
‘Obviously there’s a conversation to have with the community about the acceptability of it but we think that idea, the TraceTogether app, is a really excellent one,’ he said.
Should an Australian test positive to COVID-19, health authorities would have access to the data from the Trace Together app designed in Singapore, a much more authoritarian society than Australia