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Permanent 'Health Codes' raises privacy concerns
Published on: 2020-05-26
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qrHangzhou aims to promote its new health code, released during the COVID-19 pandemic and used to gauge virus infection risks, which has triggered widespread debate online.

Health commission officials in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang Province, deployed the work on health code integration, including citizens' digital cases, health examinations, and lifestyle management on Friday, the Xiaoshan TV reported.

Screenshots of Hangzhous proposal for a permanent color code system for tracking residents health statusScreenshots of Hangzhou’s proposal for a permanent color-code system for tracking residents’ health status

The new health code, accessible via smartphones, will monitor health conditions and behavior, including exercise, alcohol consumption, smoking, and sleeping.

The technology will be used to rank citizens according to their health.

Chinese cities have used health codes to indicate COVID-19 infection risks. Citizens are being asked to show their health codes on their smartphones before entering public places.

The Hangzhou Health Code was released on February 11. It has three colors of red, yellow, and green. Red indicates high infection risk, while green indicates safe from infection.

qr 2The commission vowed to practice the health code in May and June, making the health code a "citizen companion."

The topic "Hangzhou to upload gradient health code" has garnered more than 100 million hits on Weibo, where opinions have remained mixed.

"That's probably too much. Am I a robot? I cannot be sick otherwise I would be rooted?" said one Weibo user.

"Other people have no right to read my health report," read another comment.





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