The eight telephone operators have decided to collaborate with the european Commission, providing data on the location of the users in order to monitor the evolution of the pandemic. In Europe, which at the beginning had been (incorrectly) considered to be a problem limited to Italy are interested in now, the whole continent and appears to be evidently desirable to coordinate at the supranational level monitoring measures. After an interview with Thierry Breton, the european commissioner for the internal market, to accede to the appeal were Vodafone, Telecom Italia, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefonica, Telenor, Telia and A1 Telekom Austria.
The Commission has stated that it will use the data in anonymous form and aggregated in order to coordinate efforts to track the spread of the virus. On the topic of privacy is also addressed by the European data protection supervisor (EDPS), stressing that the project does not violate the rules on the protection of personal data, provided that they are provided for specific guarantees: the Commission should clearly define the data set you want to achieve and be transparent to the public to avoid misunderstandings.
Access to information, continues the EDPS, should be exclusively limited to qualified persons in the field of epidemiology and data analysis. Then there is the fear that these forms of monitoring of citizens can continue even after the termination of the medical emergency: Wojciech Wiewiorowski, head of the EDPS, it is clear to say that this is extraordinary solution justified by the interests at stake – the protection of public health.
In Italy, it was the Lombardy region to collaborate for the first TIM and Vodafone to track the movements of users through the data of the cell phone. It instead concludes today’s call by the Minister of Innovation, facing the world of business and research to find technologies to the tracking data, the telemedicine and the tele-service to be used in the fight against the pandemic in the next few days we will know then if they, what, and to what extent these solutions will be adopted on a wide scale in Italy.