Apple and Google announce a joint effort to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus, with user privacy central to the design.
Interesting idea. Privacy/Security are key here, and also the decision to decide on whether or not to share anonymous data at any time.
I would go further and say: lets use COVID-19 as a testrun and increase the technology to criminal investigation afterwards.
Most crimes aren't well planned but are done in affect. So most times all "participants" will have their phone with them. How about using the victims phone, reading all contacts in a given timeframe and check them?
Or a stolen phone, if it's part of the OS and utilizes the IMEI the police could flag it as stolen and the phone itself but even all around the phone for all time could track the location.
Yeah, we have good science-fiction movies/games that show us what could happen (The Circle, Watchdogs ...) - but why should we always be on the defensive side? Every hacker is able to read our location, to track bluetooth devices nearby, even WLAN with more reach, he can load our address book, messages and so on.
So the ones on the "bad" side already have those abilities. Why shouldn't we use them to make our world better?
Google also has a nearly perfect location tracking - that's how google maps calculates traffic jams and amount of people in a restaurant.
Nope nope nope. I will not be opting in, and I guess I'll be finding some alternative to Android and iOS when this inevitably shifts from opt in for COVID-19 contact tracing to you can't even opt out for government surveillance. Similar technologies have already been used in China to essentially place dissident citizens under house arrest, and I'm not going to just bend over for the state to let them monitor my every footstep. Just because criminals are the "bad" side, that does not make the state the "good" side.