According to a report from the Jerusalem Post, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was criticized by cyber experts for his proposal to “microchip” children who are going back to schools and kindergartens as the Wuhan virus lockdown is relaxed.
During a press conference on May 4, Netanyahu suggested that the Health Ministry use novel technology to help Israel transition towards a post-Wuhan virus order.
“That is, technology that has not been used before and is allowed under the legislation we shall enact,” Netanyahu made clear.
“I spoke with our heads of technology in order to find measures Israel is good at, such as sensors. For instance, every person, every kid – I want it on kids first – would have a sensor that would sound an alarm when you get too close, like the ones on cars,” the prime minister commented.
“It will be hard to do it to more than a million schoolchildren who return to their educational institutions in order to ensure one student sits at the distance of two meters from another. It is fictional and dangerous,” cyber expert Einat Meron said to Israeli news outlet Ynet.
“Theoretically, I get the idea behind it,” she remarked. “But although such distance-sensitive microchips exist in vehicles, it is different in humans.” In Meron’s view, “a beeping sound telling me I got close to someone is not enough. Who says it will change anything? I would have gotten closer either way.”
The expert also pointed out that “the actual issue is the enforcement, and here everything changes.” Meron told Ynet that “microchipping children will not pass any test – both practically and legally.” In addition to Meron’s assertion that informing citizens on their distance will not have an impact of their actions, many Israelis believe that the state would take advantage of the information available from the sensors and possibly use it in ways that violate privacy rights.
“If the information with the kids’ location is uploaded to the internet, a pedophile with some cyber knowledge may invade the system and stalk them outside their schools, follow them and distribute the information on other platforms,” Meron stated. “Can the state take responsibility for that?”
The Prime Minister’s Office replied to the report, telling Ynet that Netanyahu’s suggestion “is not to be implemented through databases, but through simple technology notifying [the citizens] about their distance. It is a voluntary option that is designed to help children keep their distance, like Mobileye with vehicles.”
The office also noted that Netanyahu’s suggestion is “an idea that may help maintain social distancing, and there will not be any violation of privacy.”
On May 6, the news outlet Walla reported that police tracked the movements of all vehicles in Israel and the data is now stored in an unregulated database named Eagle Eye. The media site cited a source which revealed that the information “may be kept for years on end.”
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) filed a request under the Freedom of Information Act that police make public how extensive the Eagle Eye operations are, in addition to the time the information on Israeli citizens’ movements that is constantly being gathered in the system.
Israel Police responded to ACRI’s concerns, declaring that the system’s activity was not subject to internal standards despite being in operation for several years. “Either way, once finalized, the procedure will not be disclosed to the public,” police highlighted.
All over the world, the Wuhan virus is bringing up similar dilemmas.
Although public safety is necessary, there needs to be a balance between keeping the population safe while respecting traditional freedoms.
Israel like the U.S., would be wise to exercise prudence when trying to handle the Wuhan virus.
U.S. Law Enforcement Bust 27 People Connected to Mexican Sinaloa Cartel
Over two dozen people were arrested on drug charges in connection to a Mexican cartel smuggling cocaine into the U.S. Following a two-year investigation, 27 people were arrested through Operation Tripwire, an investigation effort U.S. officials have been working on featuring members of the Sinaloa Cartel.
The trafficking network went from Los Angeles, California to Tucson, Arizona and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where cocaine originating from Mexico was smuggled stateside. The United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Scott Brady declared “this is a large organization that was trafficking hundreds of kilograms of cocaine throughout the country and has direct ties to the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico.”
U.S. authorities recounted that the investigations started after an agent in Pittsburgh was able to identify an address that received large quantities of suspicious-looking packages coming from California. Since then, agents started to do investigation on other members of the network across the U.S.
Across the span of seven months, authorities were able to intercept U.S. calls made by some of the alleged traffickers with Sinaloa carte leaders in Mexico. On September 9, 2020, 27 were arrested in Arizona, California, and Pennsylvania.
According to American authorities, $1.3 million in cash and over 140 kilograms of cocaine were seized. The aforementioned people arrested are now facing a prison sentence of between 10 years and life in prison.
The border situation is no joke. Prior administrations have largely neglected the issue and have allowed for unprecedented levels of illegal immigration and drug trafficking to cross the U.S. border.
In a prior instance, BLP reported on how Mexico is a failed state that cannot maintain public order and is largely being pushed around by cartels. Due to its proximity to the U.S., Mexico’s problems will likely spillover stateside.
This is why border security is crucial. Thankfully, the U.S. has a president in Donald Trump that gets the memo. He’ll still need help from Congress, however,
That’s why it’s crucial that America First Republicans have strong showings at all branches of government in 2020.
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