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Hong Kong startup's tracing app keeps coronavirus in check

Despite government assurances and overseas interest, privacy questions remain

This reporter had to wear a waterproof wristband, a key part of the Stay Home Safe monitoring system,  for two weeks. (Source photos by Ken Kobayashi and Kenji Kawase)

HONG KONG -- While the global battle against the novel coronavirus pandemic rages on, Hong Kong has managed to contain the outbreak with a mobile app that tracks people who enter the territory and returnees from abroad.

But questions are being raised over whether the app hands too much personal information to authorities at a time when Beijing is tightening the screws on dissent in Hong Kong, most recently having banned the annual candlelight vigil commemorating the June 4, 1989 Tiananmen crackdown for the first time in 30 years. The government says the move is necessary to control the virus.

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