Tech

Could Covid-19 cause a rise in government surveillance in Brazil?

Authorities are exploring the use of citizens' cell phone data to crack down on public gatherings during the Covid-19 crisis. This throws up several legal questions

Could Covid-19 cause a rise in government surveillance in Brazil?
Image: Panuwat Phimpha/Shutterstock

Just over a month after the Covid-19 pandemic arrived in Brazil, the country is taking its first concrete measures to combat the virus. In public health, many states — such as Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo — have adopted social isolation to contain the spread of the virus and closed any businesses that are not considered essential. 

The federative structure of Brazil means that state and municipal governments have a varying degree of authority to decide over certain measures within their boundaries. Isolation policies come under these devolved powers, and each state and municipality is following the path...

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