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President Joe Biden’s team of COVID-19 experts may be examining an electronic test-and-trace app that would allow businesses to deny service to customers based on health data, frighteningly similar to a surveillance system used in China, per a report from the Washington Free Beacon.
The program is being developed by the University of Illinois, the report added.
“The school’s system uses a mobile app that records test results and Bluetooth data to determine who has been exposed to the virus — and ‘links building access’ on campus to that information,” the Free Beacon wrote. “Local businesses have also embraced it, making entry conditional on a ‘safe status’ reading from the app.”
China is currently using a mobile app that records users’ health “status” to determine their access to restaurants, parks, or any other type of space where the public gathers. The Chinese app gives each user a color code to determine his or her “health” — green, yellow or red.
Per the Free Beacon, the app in development at Illinois would do the same, with users being placed in a “yellow” category if they recently tested negative for the virus, and “orange” if they’ve possibly been exposed. Users would be in the “red” if they recently tested positive. Apparently, only students who have a “yellow” status would be allowed to enter buildings.
No word yet on whether the passcode to get into the app is “666.” But the idea of apps such as this being approved for government use sure can make you think the end may be near.
“The proposal would amount to a more extreme version of the ‘vaccine passports’ being rolled out by airlines and some U.S. cities, which are already causing controversy,” the Free Beacon wrote. “Those passports, such as New York’s ‘Excelsior’ app, indicate whether an individual has tested negative or been vaccinated, but not whether they’ve been exposed to the virus based on tracking data. They collect less information and use a less granular classification scheme than the University of Illinois app, meaning they pose relatively fewer risks to civil liberties.”
On the bright side, even Biden’s most ardent supporters may not go for something as controlling as this. After all, as the Free Beacon passed along, a health status app would threaten “to exclude far more Americans from public life than measures like voter ID laws, which progressives have decried as the ‘new Jim Crow.'”
As of now, the Biden team only “appears to have entertained” the electronic track-and-trace program.