For more than two months, the United States and many other countries affected by the Coronavirus pandemic have been on lockdown. Business owners have been forced to close their doors and remain indoors. Only companies that offer essential services have been allowed to continue providing services as long as they follow safety precautions. The governor of California, Gavin Newsom, during an interview with CNBC yesterday, said that tech firms across the globe will be key in reopening the state.
Newsom believes that with an army of contact tracers and mass testing capacity, they will be able to reopen businesses even before the United States is declared Corona-free. One such contact tracing application was released by Google and Apple last week. The app allows people to know when they come in contact with an infected person. Namsom said that the government is working with Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook. Through his help, they have been able to collect data without privacy breaches. By combining individual tracers with these non-individual methods of tracing people, the Coronavirus fighting army that is being created in California will be able to tackle the problem.
Newsom said that Google’s partnership with Apple is amazing because its Bluetooth tracing app is going to protect the data of mobile phones. This isn’t a surprise since California has always been a champion of data protection In the United States. In his words;
“Last year, the biggest debate in the country was the effort California put in place to protect the privacy of its residents. We even pejoratively referred to some of our data collectors as data frackers.”
As part of their effort to protect the privacy of users while fighting Coronavirus in the state, Newsom invited the chief data and technology officer of the Obama administration to oversee the tech companies. His job is to ensure that all the applications are privacy-friendly.