Health Data, Privacy, & Surveillance: How Will the Lockdowns End?
As governments across the world look to plan their way out of the quarantine phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, many serious challenges remain. In the United States, researchers are looking ahead to immunity certificates for those who have built up antibodies against the virus. The hope is that this group will be instrumental in opening up the economy. Meanwhile in Europe, the focus is on contact and proximity tracing, in which mobile phone apps – perhaps developed by Apple and Google – will be used to track people infected with the virus, thereby allowing the healthy or immune to return to some semblance of normalcy.
Of course, there are deep ethical and practical questions about these tools: How should we think about privacy and government surveillance in times of crisis? What kinds of legal protections are needed for “immune” citizens? And, if there’s not uniformity across states or nations in how society opens back up, will these tools be effective?
To share their knowledge on all of these issues, the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs is very pleased to have Effy Vayena, professor of bioethics at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETHZ), and Jeffrey Kahn, director of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics, as our honored speakers in a virtual Zoom conference on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 from 12:00 to 1:00 pm to discuss “Health Data, Privacy, & Surveillance” with Carnegie Council President Joel Rosenthal.