Australia Testing ‘Orwellian’ Facial Recognition Coronavirus Tracking App

Not guilty! Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison has flatly denied a persistent rumour he soiled himself in a McDonalds 20 years ago
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Australia is developing an app that uses facial recognition and geolocation data to track its citizens, in part of the country’s draconian efforts to control coronavirus, with even the establishment leftist magazine the Atlantic branding the app “Orwellian.”

Citizens of Australia, who have already experienced the harshest quarantine policies in the western world, will be required to download an app that lets the state text them at random times, giving them 15 minutes to respond with a picture of themselves with location data to prove they are following quarantine orders.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – AUGUST 21: Protesters are seen marching holding banners on August 21, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. Anti-lockdown protesters gathered despite current COVID-19 restrictions prohibiting outdoor gatherings. Lockdown restrictions are currently in place across Melbourne as Victoria continues to record new cases of the highly infectious COVID-19 Delta variant. A curfew is also now in place from 9 pm to 5 am each night across the metropolitan area. The restrictions are set to remain in place until 11.59 pm on Thursday, 2 September. (Photo by Getty Images)

lockdown

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – AUGUST 21: A man holds a banner reading “Freedom” atop a tram stop during an anti-lockdown protest on August 21, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. Anti-lockdown protesters gathered despite current COVID-19 restrictions prohibiting outdoor gatherings. Lockdown restrictions are currently in place across Melbourne as Victoria continues to record new cases of the highly infectious COVID-19 Delta variant. A curfew is also now in place from 9 pm to 5 am each night across the metropolitan area. The restrictions are set to remain in place until 11.59 pm on Thursday, 2 September. (Photo by Getty Images)

If the data is off, or if they don’t respond in time, they get a visit from the police.

Via the Atlantic:

Intrastate travel within Australia is also severely restricted. And the government of South Australia, one of the country’s six states, developed and is now testing an app as Orwellian as any in the free world to enforce its quarantine rules. People in South Australia will be forced to download an app that combines facial recognition and geolocation. The state will text them at random times, and thereafter they will have 15 minutes to take a picture of their face in the location where they are supposed to be. Should they fail, the local police department will be sent to follow up in person. “We don’t tell them how often or when, on a random basis they have to reply within 15 minutes,” Premier Steven Marshall explained. “I think every South Australian should feel pretty proud that we are the national pilot for the home-based quarantine app.”

The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf concludes that Australia “traded away too much liberty” in the name of fighting coronavirus.

“Australia has become a hermit continent,” concludes Friedersdorf, stating that the country’s future “may turn on whether its people crave the feeling of safety and security that orders from the top confer, or whether they want to be free.”

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. He is the author of #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election.

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