Matt Hancock has been pushing the absolute pile of dicks that has been digitised and turned into an app that's just about ready to fuck anyone who uses it, and it turns out he can't even get the launch date right.
In fairness, the health secretary probably thought the government could get away with foisting it on everyone asap, despite the fact it doesn't work properly and is riddled with privacy and security issues - all of which you can read about in a much lengthier rant from earlier today about how even more problems have been flagged in a report analysing exactly these things. Spoiler alert: it's more terrible than you can imagine.
Hancock has previously said that the contact tracing app would be good to go in mid-May, which we're at the tail end of now. Being the tech-savvy privacy advocate he is, how could he have foreseen the glaring issues that it's now being faced with? So now he looks even more fucking stupid than usual - an impressive feat for a man who said a pandemic isn't the time to address increasing nurse's salaries - because we're not likely to see the app until June at the earliest.
NHS sources have said the devs have problems to address before the app goes live, which is an understatement, and that it's "a complicated thing to do and get right." Well if you're trying to scam people into handing over their data, and fighting tooth and nail to come up with excuses as to why you need to hold onto that, and suggesting that no new legislation is required in these unprecedented times, then yes, I imagine getting everyone on board with your bullshit would be challenging.
In fact, now the government has gone the opposite way, downplaying the significance of the app, with one source saying it's merely “a support: a digital supplement” to human contact-tracing, and that “there’s been a bit too much focus on the app.” So which is it, and how are they justifying the potential human rights breaches, disregard for privacy, and lack of security involved in its architecture? Martha Spurrier, director of Liberty, said:
"Given the government’s record of sharing health, education and police records with immigration enforcement, it’s alarming that it has chosen an app design that prioritises data collection – including data not needed for contact-tracing – over privacy.”
Just to reiterate, that's data that isn't needed for contact-tracing that the government has every intention to keep. Hancock has even dismissed the idea of new legislation to regulate all of this, saying "the Data Protection Act will do the job," which is clearly not the case. The whole thing reeks of horse shit, but perhaps the app will get exposed to such a degree that it'll be ditched or reworked entirely. We can but hope. [The Guardian]
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