Today the UK Government launched a new Emergency Text Alert System that, they claim, will enable authorities to alert citizens if their life is thought to be in danger, with Coronavirus first on the list.
Warnings will be sent directly to people's phones and smart devices in the event the government describe as "a risk to life", claiming "Alerts could be sent for situations including public health emergencies, severe floods, fires, industrial incidents and terror attacks." The Government state that there is precedence for such systems, and therefore justification for it here, as similar devices exist in other countries, including New Zealand, "where it has been widely credited with saving lives," a Whitehall spokesman said. The first trial will be in East Suffolk on 25 May, when residents will receive a test alert, with a second test will be held in Reading on 15 June, following this the system will be rolled out nationwide in time for lockdowns secretly scheduled for later this year.
The Government go on to claim the alerts "do not reveal your location and do not collect any personal data. Alerts can also only be sent by authorised governmental and emergency services users," It will be impossible to opt-out of the system, the command will override all settings on your phone. It would seem that your privacy is again a 'fluid concept' with our techno-overlords.
Alarmingly, the system is likely to be operated by local authorities who are said to want control of the device to enable local lockdowns, when the Tier system is reintroduced. Local councils will be able to issue lockdown orders to its residents if it deems necessary (and it will) for any Covid outbreaks. The command will be compulsory with failure to comply resulting in fines or even imprisonment. It is envisaged that authorities will also demand residents refrain from driving cars on days it deems too polluted. Floods and Fires, in reality, are rare events that do not require a device of this nature. Its true purpose may be obfuscated through suggesting it is a life-saving tool but the real intent is an easier way of maintaining control.
If it feels like the sub-plot of a dystopian novel then that will be because it is, electronic devices and billboards flashing up rules sent from faceless technocrats is a common theme in dystopian literature.