Used on and off since March 2020 in efforts to curb the pandemic, the Shin Bet counter-terrorism agency’s surveillance technology matched carriers’ locations against other mobile phones nearby to determine with whom they came into contact.
From the outset, civil rights groups had mounted court challenges over privacy concerns while lawmakers cast doubt about the efficacy of the contact-tracing tool.
In its ruling, the court said it feared the mobile phone tracing, imposed as a temporary emergency measure, was slowly becoming permanent. It gave the government until March 14 to end indiscriminate use of the surveillance and limit it to confirmed coronavirus carriers who refuse epidemiological questioning.
“We hope this ruling will lead the government and the Knesset (parliament) to pause and change…