8 Jul '20
A draft order released by the Ministry of Digital Development earlier this week would authorize Russian authorities to use geolocation data from mobile communication service providers for enforcing Covid-19 quarantine measures.
The order would require that telecom companies use geolocation data from Covid-19 patients’ mobile phones for identifying any mobile phone users who “have been in the same geolocations and in [close] contact” with those subsequently diagnosed with Covid-19.
Telecom companies would also be expected to track their customers who have violated 14-day self-isolation requirements or have recently arrived from abroad, and report them to law enforcement and regional authorities.
Since purchasing mobile data plans in Russia require that customers identify themselves by presenting a federal ID, the measures included in the draft order would help law enforcement authorities identify and locate those who may be infected with Covid-19 or have violated the self-isolation rules as well as their immediate family members. Violating the 14-day self-isolation requirement is punishable by a fine of up to $2,100.