Ethical guidelines for COVID-19 tracing apps

Publication Title
Publication/Creation Date
May 28 2020
Jessica Morley (creator)
Josh Cowls (creator)
Mariarosaria Taddeo (creator)
Luciano Floridi (creator)
University Of Oxford (creator)
The Alan Turing Institute (creator)
Media Type
Journal Article
Persuasive Intent

Technologies to rapidly alert people when they have been in contact with someone carrying the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 are part of a strategy to bring the pandemic under control. Currently, at least 47 contact-tracing apps are available globally (see They are already in use in Australia, South Korea and Singapore, for instance. And many other governments are testing or considering them.

Here we set out 16 questions to assess whether — and to what extent — a contact-tracing app is ethically justifiable. These questions could assist governments, public-health agencies and providers to develop ethical apps — they have already informed developments in France, Italy and the United Kingdom. They will also help watchdogs and others to scrutinize such technologies.

HCI Platform
Location on Body
Technology Keywords
Smartphone Applications
Marketing Keywords
Apple, Google, TraceTogether, COVIDsafe

Date archived
June 1 2020
Last edited
June 1 2020
How to cite this entry
Jessica Morley, Josh Cowls, Mariarosaria Taddeo, Luciano Floridi, University Of Oxford, The Alan Turing Institute. (May 28 2020). "Ethical guidelines for COVID-19 tracing apps". Nature. Springer Nature Publishing. Fabric of Digital Life.