Apple and Google join forces to fight COVID-19 - A
Apple and Google join forces to fight COVID-19 - ACS
Your phone will trace proximity to infected persons.
Privacy authorities face a new challenge as Apple and Google ramp up efforts to embed automatic coronavirus contact tracing into their smartphone operating systems within months. In an unusual pique of cooperation, the CEOs of Apple and Google announced a partnership that will enable their devices to anonymously record a list of the phones of people that their owners pass close to. That information, which will be exchanged automatically via promiscuous Bluetooth connections, creates a record of the other people that the user comes into contact with. The opt-in apps will automatically raise an alert should anyone on that list of contacts later become infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus. Its a ubiquitous version of a technique most successfully executed by the government of Singapore, which has convinced over 1 million of its 5.6m citizens to download the TraceTogether app that has been open-sourced for use anywhere in the world. Google and Apples work which will bear fruit with new operating-system versions by May will dramatically expand the reach of Bluetooth contact tracing, first by allowing apps from public health authorities to anonymously collect data exchanged by users phones. An app framework provided to formalise the data exchange and, within a few months, the capability will be embedded into both Apples iOS and Googles Android operating systems, extending the contact tracking to an estimated 3 billion combined users. Making location sharing Despite Singapores early move into phone-based contact tracing an opt-in version of more-intrusive government tracing efforts in countries like South Korea, China and Israel many Western governments have balked at ubiquitous mobile-phone tracing. That could make coronavirus a feather in the cap of Apple and Google, which have been all but begging for use cases that justify their mass collection of users location data already used for tasks like monitoring traffic density and the foot traffic at individual businesses. Googles recently released location maps expanded the list by providing insight into the movement of people through common spaces. However, the prospect of allowing the company to mass-collect data about Australians might be unpalatable for the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC), given that the organisation is currently litigating against Google for its past use of location data. Despite their hunger for mobile phones that track location passively, Australians have been less than enthusiastic about explicit location tracking, with even potentially life-saving advanced mobile location (AML) technology for Triple-0 calls still months away. Yet early concerns about privacy and government surveillance are giving way to pragmatism, with new apps emerging from governments in France and the UK which has just launched its own contact-tracing app. Academics believe phone-based contact tracing could be invaluable in New Zealand, and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison recently intimated his government is also looking at options. A systematic approach to privacy Yet concerns persist, with some warning that the apps wouldnt work very well and many concerned that they would create a privacy nightmare by allowing authorities to not only track users movements, but to track whom they associate with on a regular basis. Even in desperate times, there are privacy concerns, Macquarie University Department of Computing professor Dr Dali Kaafar and lecturer Dr Hassan Asghar argued in a recent technical analysis of the TraceTogether code that argued the apps should use a more decentralised architecture to dissipate the concentration of personal data. Security researchers have been working hard to address such concerns, with Stanford University-University of Waterloo researchers modelling the potential efficacy of apps like their Covid Watch and experts arguing that it is possible to implement contact tracing while preserving individual privacy. Apple and Google have already published a cryptography specification outlining the way the rapidly evolving system would function, both in co-ordinating the data exchange between devices and in using cryptographic techniques to preserve the privacy of the collected data. Reflecting concerns about building a centralised database of contacts, that specification requires that any calculated matches are stored on each users phone and not be revealed to the Diagnosis Server that manages the exchange of the heavily encrypted data. Privacy-rights organisation the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) recently published a white paper analysing the potential serious practical problems posed by contact-tracing apps, with surveillance and cybersecurity counsel Jennifer Granick writing in a subsequent analysis that the Google-Apple approach appears to mitigate the worst privacy and centralisation risks, but there is still room for improvement.
Other News Australia
Police investigating George Pell over fresh child sexual abuse allegation – report - The Guardian
News Corp says acquitted cardinal faces new claims over alleged incident in the 1970s when he was a priest in Ballarat
Cardinal George Pell is being investigated by police over a new allegation of child sexual abuse, according to News Corp reports. Pell was released from jail last Tuesday after the high court acquitted him on five historical child sexual abuse charges. Pell, 78, spent more than 400 days in jail after being convicted by a jury in December 2018. The high court acquitted Pell after finding the jury should have held a reasonable doubt as to his guilt. Pell has given an exclusive interview to his longtime friend and supporter from Sky News, Andrew Bolt, which is due to air on Tuesday night. On Tuesday the Herald-Sun reported that Pell was being investigated by police over an incident in the 1970s, when Pell was a priest in the Victorian town of Ballarat. The report did not suggest the allegation was true, and Pell has always vehemently denied all allegations of sexual abuse against him. A Victoria police spokesman said: Victoria police will not be providing any comment in relation to these allegations. Guardian Australia has contacted the Catholic archdiocese of Sydney for comment. Pells spokeswoman, Katrina Lee, was quoted by the Herald-Sun as saying: In any police matter there should be due process through the proper channels. Pell may also face a number of civil cases. In a preview of the Pell interview released by Sky News, Bolt alluded to the possibility of new investigations and said Pell would respond to questions about Victoria police in the interview. In the preview Bolt asks Pell: How would you react if the Victorian police were to keep trawling for victims, keep trawling for attempts to prosecute you? Pell responds: Well, I wouldnt be entirely surprised. But who knows. Thats their business. At a Victoria police media conference on Tuesday afternoon, deputy commissioner Shane Patton was asked for his response to allegations police had a vendetta against Pell. Patton said: I dont have any comments to make at all in respect to Cardinal Pell. Bolt wrote numerous opinion pieces in support of Pell before the criminal case had concluded. The conclusion of Pells criminal trial last week sparked renewed calls for the federal attorney general, Christian Porter, to release the redacted sections of the child sexual abuse royal commissions final report that related to Pell. The commission, which examined institutional abuse throughout Australia, published its final report in 2017 but pages relating to Pell were blanked out so as not to jeopardise his criminal case. However, a new criminal investigation may place the release of the commission report in doubt. The redacted section examines the actions of Catholic church authorities in Ballarat, including at the time when Pell was a priest in the region. Pell was cross-examined by the commission in 2016 on what he knew about the notorious paedophile priest Gerald Ridsdale, who was a friend of Pells at the time in Ballarat. Pell responded: It was a sad story and of not much interest to me. I had no reason to turn my mind to the evils Ridsdale had perpetrated. Pell shared a house with Ridsdale and sat on a committee of priests who made decisions to move Ridsdale from parish to parish. The comment to the commission from Pell drew the ire of Bolt at the time, who said it revealed Pell was lying about or dangerously indifferent to the abuse occurring around him. Whether or not he directly knew and the case against him is circumstantial did he actually do what was necessary for any moral person and pursue the interests of the children being abused? Bolt told Sky News at the time. And on that ground I think the case against him is very damning. But he rowed back on those comments just one day later, stating: I feel embarrassed because I think Ive joined the pack attacking Pell. What he [Pell] seems to have said, meant to say, was that he had no reason to look at what was happening in that parish of Inglewood by Gerald Ridsdale and as a result, those things slipped his mind. Bolt secured an exclusive interview with Pell in 2016 after Pell concluded giving evidence to the commission.
Pell's jail diaries detail 'petty humiliations', job as roof gardener - Sydney Morning Herald
The cardinal has released excerpts from his prison diary revealing his thoughts and activities during more than 400 days behind bars before his release last week.
The cardinal also took on a gardening job on the Melbourne Assessment Prison roof, but wrote that he "lost it in a demarcation dispute". "Its not the Hilton but its well run," Cardinal Pell went on to write of prison. "I had a shower, a toilet and a bed with a firm base. What else does a man need?" Cardinal Pell was in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day but accepted it was necessary to stay safe. "So I'm not complaining," he wrote of the isolation. He said he was used to such confinement because as a seminarian he had to partake in "grand silence" from mid-evening until 9am the next morning. In an interview with Sky News that will air on Tuesday evening the cardinal reacted to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews' statement following his acquittal. "I have a message for every single victim and survivor of child sex abuse: I see you. I hear you. I believe you," Mr Andrews said. Cardinal Pell said the Premier's comments suggested a "presumption of guilt" for anyone accused of abuse. "Victims should be accepted as credible," the cardinal said. "I believe them. But what has to be established is that they are victims. Guilt by accusation is a mark of an uncivilised society." Cardinal Pell also said he was targeted for criticism regarding the response of the Catholic Church in Australia to child abuse because he was "the most high-profile face of the church in Australia". The Australian reported that he still stands by the Melbourne Response to child sexual abuse in the church, a redress scheme he led, despite criticism of it. Cardinal Pell has been staying at a seminary in Homebush, Sydney.Credit:Peter Rae In the Sky News interview Cardinal Pell took aim at the ABC for the way it reported his conviction and subsequent appeals and acquittal. Interviewer Andrew Bolt asked the cardinal if the ABC's perceived role in his "persecution" concerned him. "Yes it does," Cardinal Pell responded. "Because, I mean, it [the ABC] is partly financed by Catholic taxes," Cardinal Pell told Bolt. "These things have to be tested respectfully. The pendulum 30 or 40 years ago was massively against anybody who said that they had been attacked. "Nowadays, we dont want to just swing back so that every accusation is regarded as gospel truth. That would be quite unjust and inappropriate." If you or anyone you know needs support, you can contact the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service on 1800RESPECT (1800 737 732), Lifeline 131 114, or beyondblue 1300 224 636.