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This new report jointly published by the Korean Progressive Network Jinbonet and the Institute for Digital Rights summarises digital rights violations during the response to COVID-19 in South Korea.
South Korea's COVID-19 response has been considered successful thus far. However, punishment- and control-oriented policies have raised many concerns from a human rights perspective. In particular, excessive collection and disclosure of personal data in the process of epidemiological investigation and contact tracing of people with COVID-19 has resulted in the infringement of digital rights. In some cases, patients’ personal data and movements were disclosed, causing them to become targets for hate speech online. More than 10,000 people’s access information for mobile base stations was collected in the name of tracking contacts. In addition, despite opposition from the National Human Rights Commission of Korea and human rights organisations, those who violate self-quarantine orders are being forced to wear electronic positioning devices, which have previously only been applied to sex offenders.
This report summarises digital rights violations during the response to COVID-19 in South Korea. Based on the report, the Korean Progressive Network Jinbonet and the Institution for Digital Rights will conduct further research in the coming year.
This report was produced with the support of the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) through a subgrant made possible by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), and has been published in English and Korean.
Read the full report in English here.