Pan-European Privacy Preserving Proximity Tracing Initiative
According to media sources, an EU consortium led by Germany’s Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute for telecoms (HHI) will soon release software code that can be used to create apps that will help track transmission chains of COVID-19. The Pan-European Privacy Preserving Proximity Tracing (“PEPP-PT”) project comprises more than 130 members across eight European countries, including scientists, technologists, and experts.
The PEPP-PT project has published a manifesto explaining its intention to create “well-tested proximity tracking technologies” that national authorities can use to create their own COVID-19 apps. According to the manifesto, these technologies ensure “secure data anonymization” and “cross border interoperability”. The apps concerned would inform users, based on the phone’s Bluetooth signals, whether they have been in the proximity of a person who was tested positive for COVID-19.
National public authorities developing apps on the basis of this software remain free to decide how to inform persons that have been in contact with someone who has tested positive. The PEPP-PT website states that national cyber security agencies and national data protection agencies will assess the apps that are created using the code released by the PEPP-PT. EU Commissioner Thierry Breton indicated that the European Commission is also investigating whether an app using the PEPP-PT software would be compliant with “EU values”, reflecting the privacy concerns associated with such apps.
Continue Reading COVID-19 Apps and Websites – The “Pan-European Privacy Preserving Proximity Tracing Initiative” and Guidance by Supervisory Authorities