Analysis Breaking

Has Google installed the Tories’ tracking app on your Android phone without asking? No, it seems not

But there is widespread alarm among Android users at the unexpected Google ‘COVID-19 notifications’ section

Android phone users in the UK have reacted in alarm to the uninvited appearance of a new section in the ‘Google settings’ of their handset – one named ‘COVID-19 exposure notifications. The alarm stems from concern that Android has installed the Tories’ Dominic Cummings-linked coronavirus tracking app without the user’s permission and the idea that data gathered by that app to be misused or given to third parties. The SKWAWKBOX has already made clear to its readers its editor’s opinion.

A message has been circulating widely warning that ‘Google’ has automatically signed users up to the government’s app designed by close associates of Boris Johnson’s chief adviser:

However, it appears that what Google has installed in its settings section is not the Tories’ app – but rather a space or slot through which users can choose to connect to a state tracing app for notifications of exposure to someone infected with COVID-19:

It also appears, from the its ‘blurb’, that the Google section may in fact provide some ‘insulation’ from potential abuse of personal data, as it states:

The public health authority app is not allowed to use your phone’s location… The exposure notifications system itself does not use your location or share other users’ identities with the app, Google or Apple.

This remains to be confirmed. However, for the moment it seems that the anxiety about the appearance of this section in handsets’ Google settings is misplaced.

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12 comments

    1. If you are not careful, Steve H will accuse you of making “….one hell of a conspiracy…”

    2. It is on my samsung android
      I’m not techy minded, david mcniven how do I switch off usage etc, and will that stop big brother’s eye? X

  1. Mine has the new CV notification too but my usage and diagnostics are always set to ‘off’ anyway. Useful to know it’s there – I’ll keep an eye on it.
    Thanks for the heads-up, Skwawkbox.

  2. We’ve moved from being subjects to being Slaves.Owned by big business and the government.Freedom has gone out of the window were murder by the government is just a Statistic and a discussion for the establishment to normalize

    1. Joseph, you could argue that we were little more than slaves for centuries until WWII brought change, the fifties brought opportunity and the sixties empowered the youth.
      From ’45 until the mid seventies oil crisis, things were getting better all the time for the many – that’s when the corner was turned I think. The house price boom was followed by the crash and since then it’s been downhill all the way but for the odd ripple – now the hope of the Corbyn years is gone the future could be bleak until we give the rich their reward for all those centuries of land theft and enslavement.

  3. Good to see that Sqwakbox is committed to countering ALL misinformation and not just the most egregious political stuff. As someone who is using less MSM and relies more on you, I think this is a good move. Keep up the good work but dont forget why you started this!

  4. DOWN with this type of THING!

    If it’s there and YOU didn’t put it there don’t be reassured that it isn’t On – like an Uber or Amazon app, it can maybe be SWITCHED ON REMOTELY.

    DOWN WITH THIS TYPE OF THING – and the people who do it!

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