Liberals want to resurrect COVID Alert from its grave

Keean Bexte

August 31, 2022

The lockdown-loving Liberal government isn’t done with using the pandemic as an excuse to spy on Canadians through the COVID Alert app yet.

Liberals want to resurrect COVID Alert from its grave
Liberals want to resurrect COVID Alert from its grave.

As per a report by True North, Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) want to “explore” creating a successor to the disastrous COVID Alert contact tracing app that has wider abilities to collect people’s data. 

An audit describes how the Liberals want to “ensure the successful development” of a “similar app” for future public health measures. 

“The evaluation reviewed a number of lines of evidence, including document and public opinion research (POR) reviews, and interviews with internal and external key informants,” the report reads. 

“As a result, a few lessons learned emerged and should be considered to ensure the successful development and launch of a similar app by the Government of Canada in the future.”

Taxpayers wasted $20 million on the development and launch of the COVID Alert app, which was only actually used by 57,000 people.

Last month the application was shut down by the federal government because of its poor performance and privacy concerns.

Now, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wants to create an even more invasive contact tracing program. 

“While keeping privacy at the core of app design, explore options to increase the ability to collect data, including personal information, to aid public health measures,” auditors explained.

“Any discussion about the collection of personal information would benefit from early engagement of internal privacy experts…”

The audit comes at a time when the Trudeau government is struggling to justify clinging onto the ArriveCan app at airports.

Similar concerns about privacy surrounding the application have led the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada to launch an investigation into whether the app has violated the rights of Canadians. 

“Our office has received and is currently investigating a complaint that raises concerns with respect to the collection of personal information through ArriveCan and subsequent use of that information,” wrote the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

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