Traveling in the time of Covid-19

Covid-19 times are not easy; we are not used to dealing with such situations. This experience has forced us to change our ways of acting and our standards. Naturally, the majority of us are very concerned about our privacy, we want to protect our data and our families, and minimize our public exposure.

Teleworking will become much more widespread in many areas. Online training, which is already a reality, will continue growing rapidly. Fortunately, we live in a connected world that offers us countless quality solutions for working and learning at home. Nevertheless, human beings have an intrinsic need to relate with each other, to be close to one another, to travel and to move freely. Although we all have to adapt to this new situation and change many aspects of our lives, we are not going to give up the things we need to feel accomplished, to do our work or to enjoy our leisure time.

However, something as simple as taking a trip on public transport or having a coffee in a bar can become an odyssey if we have to maintain rigorous social distancing measures, or if we are concerned about the state of health of those who are with us. Thus, it is necessary to implement measures that will make it easier for us to safely carry out the activities that we have been doing until now, perhaps at the expense of having to share the data that we previously considered personal.

There are different initiatives which have set out mechanisms through which we could gradually move out of lockdown, such as those of Hostelería de España, Acotex, CEC, Aecoc, etc. Some proposals even present a type of biological passport. However, while coming up with all those solutions, we have to be very careful not to disturb the delicate balance between our rights, data privacy and security.

Alternatives such as blockchain facilitate the development of balanced solutions and will allow to issue visas ratified by governments and health authorities. These instruments will facilitate free movement in much the same way as before, and without exposing confidential or personal information to the public.

An interesting initiative:





Juan Manuel Corchado

Full Professor in Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, Department of Computer Science and Automation, University of Salamanca, Spain.


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