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Data Security Assignment: Threats & Risks of CovidSafe App


Task: Scenario The sudden increase in COVID-19 cases worldwide has caused considerable disruption in many countries. However, a number of countries have started to use an individual tracking approach to try and contain the spread of the virus such as “CovidSafe”.

After your successful engagement to develop privacy and personal data protection strategies for DAS, you have been engaged by the Department of Health (DoH) to advise on the development of privacy and data protection for CovidSafe users. DoH expect up to 16 million Australian mobile users to download and use this app. DoH have announced that they will be using a major U.S. based public cloud provider to host the CovidSafe data, but claim that the data will always be under Australian Government control.

You are to provide a report on data security assignmnet to DoH that:
1. Discusses the possible threats and risks to the security of user data on mobile phones and in linked Cloud and financial accounts from the use of the CovidSafe app.

2. Discusses the possible threats to the privacy of a user's data, location and activities from the use of the CovidSafe app.

3. Discusses the issues of data sovereignty that may apply to the storage of CovidSafe data in U.S. based Cloud storage.

4. You are to recommend that DoH adopt:
a. Possible security controls that would prevent the loss or breach of user data, while still enabling effective tracking for COVID-19, and the reasons these controls will be effective.
b. Possible privacy controls to protect user privacy, particularly of data, location and activity, while still enabling effective tracking of COVID-19, and the reasons these controls will be effective.
c. Possible controls to ensure that the CovidSafe data remains under Australian data sovereignty and control, and the reasons these controls will be effective.


It is stated herein data security assignment that in the era of the digital world, the concern for privacy and security is increasing day by day. For the disabling of privacy and security, cloud computing is regarded as having as potential. With the concern of privacy and security, it is the responsibility of every company to make the information and data of different parties in the cloud safe and private. For getting the solutions related to the cloud, there is a set of different techniques and technologies used named as privacy and security control. Using privacy and security control, the company can control every information and data. Another way that can be used for such a purpose is data encryption. This is basically used by the cloud provider as it is very much helpful for maintaining the technologies and different services. The report is prepared with the primary motive and that is to understand and study the possible risk and the threats related to the security and privacy of different users when they use their data on various mobile phones. In the report, the threats of different user's privacy and security, activities, location, data have been given by applying different apps of Covidsafe. Another issue outlined in this data security assignment that can be arisen by using such an app to store data is data sovereignty. The threats that can be arisen by using cloud storage for storing data are also given. Some of the points related to the recommendation for getting security control, control of data sovereignty, and privacy control are also mentioned.

Security risk and Data Risk
Most of the company concentrates on the security of mobile, as there is a huge chance of having the information and data by the attacker. In the era of the digital world, every worker does their daily work with the use of their mobile phone. Nowadays, the mobile phone is proved to be very much helpful in doing their daily activities. The activities may relate to academic or business functions. It is very much helpful to manage and maintain the operations of the business in a very easy way. Many persons find it tough to use a mobile phone now as the risk of data hacking and attacking has been increased in the current year. Some of the possible risk related to the data hacking and attacking by using a mobile phone has been mentioned below(Amare et al., 2020).

Leakages of Data- After analyzing, it could be noted as some of the apps of mobile phones are creating leakage of data without having any intention. It is very much risky for the user to use their entire information and data on the mobile phone. These risks can be occurred by using apps with the sign of hostile enterprises, the code of distribution is used by these malware programs. These codes are distributed to the operating system like iOS and Android. It is considered a big issue that leaks the information and data of the different users. They use this information and data to disturb the legal action actioned by the user(Oliver et al., 2020).

Unsecured Wi-Fi- Unsecured Wi-Fi can be considered as a big risk and issue. When any person gets the connection of wi-fi freely, they become super excited and started using it by connecting it to their device. But, they forget the possible risk that could be arises by using this free connection of wi-fi. These types of connections and leak the data of the user without any difficulty. Using the connection of wi-fi without a password is very much dangerous for the user and is very unsafe. It has a great chance of getting stolen and hacked off their private information like data, apps, pictures, videos, and other documents too. This issue is mainly experienced by mobile phone users. This is the reason why is very much significant for the mobile phone user to understand all the outcomes of using an unsecured connection of wi-fi. They should be aware of the apps that which app is harmful to their data and which one is safe. It can not only harm their information and data but also can make their phone damage. Using such apps and unsecured wi-fi connections, it has a great chance of increment of negativity on the personal data and information of mobile phone users. Network Spoofing- The problem of network spoofing may arise when the programmer makes a set up of fake connection of access. These connections are resembled like the connection of a network but are actually a trap. These traps are placed at different public spots where a great number of mobile pho e users visit to get the connection of an unsecured network. Some of the examples of these places are airports, restaurants, libraries, railway stations, coffee houses, and many more like this. These are the places used by the hacker for the purpose of a data leak. Vising such a place, so many mobile phone users get attracted to the free connection of wi-fi and started using it by connecting it to their device. After connecting the fake connection to their device the personal information and data get leaked. In such a case, the hacker needs to make their id for having the access to these facilities, they also need to put the correct password. Most of the users decided and put the same e-mail id and password for various services, the hacker finds it easy to hack by using other's password and e-mail id(Oliver et al., 2020).

Phishing Attack- Having the feature of the power-driven in the smartphones, it is regarded as front liners for such attacks. According to one of the surveys of CSO, the use of the mobile phone is regarded as a sign of exposure. This is because the user of the mobile phone monitor and controls their id in the actual time. By doing this, the mobile phone user opens the mails and go through it after receiving the mails. There are vulnerabilities in the technologies used by different mobile phone users. The reason behind this is that there is very limited information and data are displayed at the app of e-mail and that has to be accommodated in a very small space. It is also has been noticed that, so many users have to deal with the problem of financial account and in-linked system of cloud after using the app of covid safe. It has been exposed by the government that most of the mobile phone users have to deal and face such problems after using this application software. At the present time, the pandemic of covid 19 has to be faced by everyone and forced to spend their time inside their house. Recently, the government has made a covid safe application. The application updates every person with every information related to the coronavirus disease, The app is also helpful in tracing the people who have gone through or going through the disease. Some of the limitations are also faced by some of the countries over the world by using this covid safe app. Bluetooth is used by the app to trace for the person whether the person has the disease or not with whom the person has spent time. The main motive of this is to alert every person that has been coming in the contact with a person having this fever as this is a viral disease. One of the limitations that have been found in this app is that sometimes it gives false information about the person having covid. This is the reason for the increment in stress and tension to the people. Hence, providing false information reduces people's trust in such apps(Naudé, 2020).

Privacy, Activity, and Location Issues
It is very common to use different types of services and applications in this IT world by mobile phone and internet users. The need for such apps can be seen during the pandemic of covid 19 when various apps are being used by the government to minimize the spread of disease all over the world. In the country, Australia, the government is using these apps for the reduction of corona positive patients across the country(Liu & Guo, 2020).

With the expansion of IT, the rate of cybercrime is also increasing day by day. When the covid safe user uses their data in the app, the hacker finds it easy to steal using the database. This is mainly seen in America. So, the following are some of the threats that the user finds by using the app of covid safe that involves location, data, and activities of various app users. Data Leak- there is a huge risk involves in the use of the covid safe application. The risk is having a chance of getting leaked of personal information and data of the app users. Such types of the application need various information like personal data, contact information, and other data before login to the app. All this information is kept in services like cloud service. From there cybercriminal can hack the data of users used to log in to the application. One of the things is very crucial and that is personal data and is very easy to steal. Data Hacking- All the user's data are stored in the service cloud in the USA. From there cybercriminals and hackers can hack the data. Not only personal data, but financial data can be also stolen by the attacker. This is the reason why money looting can be seen by using some of the mobile applications. Location Tracing- The location of the app user can also be traced by the covid safe app. Before locating this, the app waits for the permission of the user to allow it. The activity can also be seen by the government as the app record the location (Moodie et al., 2020).

Issues of Data Sovereignty
Australia is known as the sovereign country that has been using the application of covidsafe. Theyare using it for tracing the corona virus-positive people and to minimize the spread of the disease. The great pandemic of coronavirus has made forced most of the county to used such safe application as the application is very much helpful to find patients and record location(Ienca&Vayena, 2020). The application uses a service cloud to keep the information and data of the app user. The Australian government says that all the information and data of this app useris controlled by them but cloud based storage is used for this and hence the data sovereignty related question is being raised there. The issue of data leaked and steal is created because the information and data of the app user are stored in cloud-based storage. After hacking of the data, it can be sold to the enemy country and their data will be used for different purposes. In the era of information technology, war can be started using the data of the country. The war-related to cyber never reveals the type of attack attacked by the enemy country. The main issue of the sovereign county is data loss that is kept in the storage machine.

Using the computerized device, the modern hackers find it easy to steal the data through a different connection. The issue of Australia can be solved by protecting the information and data of such a covid safe user. It should remove the involvement of other parties so that they can not use them for their benefit. The peoples must be aware of which connection should be connected to their device and what to ignore. Also, the medium for storing the user's information and data should be changed(Hou et al., 2019).

Security Control

Security controls are the safeguard that is used to protect, avoid, reduce, and privacy issues to the computer system, physical property. There are so many types of security control are available that contains operations, functions, management, privacy. One of the recommendations can be noted that security controls are very much helpful in securing the privacy of users. The following mentioned points are the security control that is very much helpful in making the user's data safe and preventing data loss:

Regular Assessment of Risk- One of the important action should be taken by the government is to employ a person or employee that will manage all such problems. The problems are related to the viral disease of the coronavirus. The person will also responsible to submit the work down. Later, the report will be reviewed and make any changes according to the need. This system can be proved to be very efficient and efficient as it will be very much helpful to analyze and review the risk before focusing on any specific risk. All the related risks can be avoided by using such a system(Cho et al., 2020).

Data Backup- Data backup is another control that is able to save the information and data of the user to trace for the person having the coronavirus. Many governments from different countries use data backup to make the information and data of these app users safe and very private. It is also regarded as a very effective and efficient system.

Privacy Control
Privacy control is very much helpful for the user to make their location, activity, information, and data privacy when the government is busy tracing the person faced coronavirus using the covid safe application. it is very much necessary that the law of privacy should be considered rather than the launching of mobile phones with different features. For bringing the privacy law into consideration, the government should concentrate and study it. The law should be elated to the removal of privacy risks and issues(Calzada, 2020). One of the counties that can be taken into consideration is China. The country does not have any privacy law but the county focuses very attentively on the security of cyber. This is very much helpful for them to keep their information and data private using the security of cyber. Another example of which one can focus on is Europe. It has been continually taking the benefits of using GDPR. It provides the best system of data security. Most of the government focuses on the law of privacy to deal with the issues and risks related to privacy and security. In this tough time also, some of the people engaged in doing wrong works that are illegal. They are busy hacking the government site so that they can get so many user's information and data related to their location, pictures, documents, and many more like this. They hacked all the data and misuse it for a different purpose. In the pandemic situation, everyone is forced to do their work from home and hence, privacy control became very much important for every organization, company, institution, business. That is the reason why it became very important, everyone has to submit their assignment from home. For this purpose, the user needs a legal and good application, also, the app should be registered by the government. The app must be free of any risk and that will keep all the information and data of the user privacy(Reichert et al., 2020).

Control of Data Sovereignty
The control of data sovereignty is also helpful to manage the data that has been collected by different users using different applications of mobile phones. This control is just like the idea that the government will be responsible to submit the data and will take legal action according to the need. Cloud computing is increasing day by day, with these different acts and norms are also passing in great number(Boukadidi et al., 2020). The policies are related to the system that will measure the amount of sovereignty of data and keep the information and data safe. In this pandemic situation, the government is passing laws according to the situation. Not only the government, but the public is also putting their efforts into making the situation better and agree on the term of government. Nowadays, the government is concentrating on the sovereignty of data. This is also regarded as a very effective and efficient approach. The basis of this approach is to restore the people's trust by proving them the needy tool used to make their information and data safe. The information and data are very much helpful in principle designing of applications related to data. These secured data are used to manage public details and are also helpful in making the remaining data safe.

This section covered a short conclusion of the whole report. From the whole report it could be noted that, during the great pandemic of the coronavirus, the main concern that most of the person is going through is the concern related to security and privacy of information and data. This is also creating a negative impact on people's mind. The level of tension, stress, and anxiety has been increased. This is the reason why many people can not focus on their work. The threats and risks of privacy of information and data have been discussed in the report. What type of risk can be created by using the covid safe application of mobile phones is also mentioned. These threats and risks are network spoofing,m phishing attacks, leakage and stealing of data, the connection of wi-fi without any password. In the report, the different controls used by a different country to make the system safe and private is also given. Data backup and ruler assessment of risk are some of the security control recommended to avoid the hacking of private data. All the different system of privacy control used by a different user in the great pandemic of covid 19 has been mentioned. Some of the good suggestions are also provided that the government should be applied to improve the going situation and to avoid the risk of data stealing and hacking.

Amare, M., Abay, K. A., Tiberti, L., & Chamberlin, J. (2020). Impacts of COVID-19 on food security:

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Calzada, I. (2020). Setting up the Basque algorithmic nation: Technological sovereignty amidst the post-COVID-19 society. TM eLab.

Cho, H., Ippolito, D., & Yu, Y. W. (2020). Contact tracing mobile apps for COVID-19: Privacy considerations and related trade-offs. arXiv preprint arXiv:2003.11511.Hou, J., Qu, L., & Shi, W. (2019). A survey on internet of things security from data perspectives. Computer Networks, 148, 295-306.

Ienca, M., &Vayena, E. (2020). On the responsible use of digital data to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic. Nature medicine, 26(4), 463-464.

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Naudé, W. (2020). Artificial intelligence vs COVID-19: limitations, constraints and pitfalls. Ai & Society, 1.

Oliver, N., Lepri, B., Sterly, H., Lambiotte, R., Deletaille, S., De Nadai, M., ... &Colizza, V. (2020). Mobile phone data for informing public health actions across the COVID-19 pandemic life cycle.

Oliver, N., Letouzé, E., Sterly, H., Delataille, S., De Nadai, M., Lepri, B., ... & de Cordes, N. (2020). Mobile phone data and COVID-19: Missing an opportunity?. arXiv preprint arXiv:2003.12347.

Reichert, L., Brack, S., & Scheuermann, B. (2020). Privacy-Preserving Contact Tracing of COVID-19 Patients. IACR Cryptol. ePrint Arch., 2020, 375.


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