Govt to use cellphone contact tracing for possible Covid-19 patients

Govt to use cellphone contact tracing for possible Covid-19 patients

- The South African government says it will not be spying on people with the newly introduced contact tracing measure

- Government says only the cellphone numbers of those who have tested positive will be taken in order to trace people they have been in contact with

- The number of confirmed coronavirus cases now stands at 1 462

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The South African government has denied that it will be spying on the citizens through the newly introduced contact tracing system.

Communication Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams explained on Thursday night that the Health Department has acquired permission to use cellphones to help those infected with the coronavirus to trace and understand who they have been in contact with.

Ndabeni clarified:

"We wont take anybody's number but those who have tested positive as they fill in their information. The department of Health will seek permission to have access to their geolocation." .

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She said the process will be conducted by the Health department because it will be in possession of the database of people who have contracted the coronavirus.

The minister said government respected everyone's right to privacy but in such situations individual rights were not important than the country's rights.

"The most important and critical right we are working towards is ensuring safety for South Africans so that the spread of the virus does not continue."

The Business Insider reported that the movement data will go into a special database to identify anyone who may have had physical contact with a person known to be carrying the SARS-Cov-2 virus, for possible testing and quarantine.

Users whose locations are traced need not be notified, but a judge will be given a list of the people affected – after the fact – in order to make recommendations about privacy protections, reported the Business Insider.

Briefly.co.za has gathered that the number of confirmed coronavirus cases has increased to 1 462.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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