back to article Singapore already planning version 2.0 contact-tracing wearable

The island nation announced the wearable, known as the “TraceTogether Token”, on June 9th and quickly defended the device’s privacy features on grounds that it lacks GPS features and is intended to make contact-tracing possible for those who either don’t use a smartphone or lack a suitable model. Authorities also did not rule …

  1. Flywheel Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Come ON Blighty!

    Cor blimey! Britain can't even get a shonky phone app out nationwide and I'm blowed if I'm going to whizz over to the Isle of Wight just to try it out.

    Why can't we come up with an idea like this? If the right people were in charge they could shift thousands of tracking buttons to the masses (add some bling, sell them in Primark and watch them fly off the shelves).

    I despair, I really do...

    (Paris, because the look of despair is almost tangible).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Come ON Blighty!

      Why do we want an idea like this? There's no evidence that this is a feasible solution, given the unknown time that someone may be infectious before exhibiting symptoms. Also you need an effective testing regime to support this - having a clever toy does not mean you have an effective and timely overall solution.

      So Flywheel, you big spinning mass you, every time surveillance is allowed, it is abused by someone in power. Contact tracing is a security agency's wet dream. Its use (and inaccuracy) may one day lead to false arrest and conviction.

      The quote "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." remains as salient as ever.

      1. Long John Silver
        Pirate

        Re: Come ON Blighty!

        There is no reason for believing an asymptomatic (specifically not coughing and wheezing) infected person as other than posing trivial risk of infecting other people. Such risk as there is arises from deposition of virus containing body fluid on surfaces e.g. from sweat or after nose picking. Tiny risk of infection is reduced pretty much to zero when susceptible people adhere to hand hygiene recommendations and refrain from unnecessarily touching other people.

  2. Long John Silver
    Pirate

    Workarounds if device made compulsory?

    Tracing depends upon direct very short range radio contact between devices; GPS location is too imprecise as would be tracking by cell phone bases. That being so, the question is how best to disable the device by simple means whilst wearing it yet retaining ability to re-enable it in anticipation of inspection or as necessity for entering a building.

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: Workarounds if device made compulsory?

      Metallic shielding might work, but might be obvious. A modified device with a power switch would be tricky to build but relatively easy to use. If a dictatorial country got annoyed enough though, they'd just check that history was working at any checkpoint. For example, when checking you into a building, they would verify that your device was picked up by some readers on your path. If it wasn't, you can be detained while they investigate your device for tampering or defect and possibly replace it for you.

    2. Tom Chiverton 1

      Re: Workarounds if device made compulsory?

      Large magent. Old hard drive or a nail and some wire.

      Brief stint in a microwave.

      1. onemark03

        Re: Workarounds if device made compulsory?

        Then they'll have your arse for being untraceable and for destroying the tracing function.

        Sorry mate, they've probably got that one taped already.

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