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Will the French shun the vaccine passport?

According to the results of a survey carried out by OnePoll for ExpressVPN and relayed by CNews, approximately 72 percent of French people are worried about the implementation of a vaccine passport. At the same time, less than half of the respondents are ready to use it.

Published: April 24, 2021, 6:04 am

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    The creation of a green passport or vaccine pass allowing one to move freely, without restriction, is currently the subject of controversy in several countries. This is an official document in paper or digital format certifying that its holder has received the injections of a vaccine against the Coronavirus.

    Nearly three quarters of French people, or 72 percent, have expressed their concern about the implementation of this vaccine passport, which the government plans to adopt, according to a survey conducted by OnePoll for ExpressVPN and revealed by CNews exclusively.

    According to the survey results, only 41 percent of respondents said they were ready to use this digital document for their trips and travels.

    In Germany, this proportion reached 54 percent, according to the same survey also carried out across the Rhine.

    Fears about data access

    The survey shows that the doubts of the French come from several factors. The main reason, advanced by 40 percent of respondents, is related to concerns about access to sensitive medical data that will be stored in this same document, how long this is kept and who will be able to share it.

    In addition, 37 percent of those surveyed are concerned that personal data could be hacked or leaked.

    According to the survey, three out of ten French people believe that the vaccination passport “contravenes the basic principles of medical confidentiality and the way we perceive these questions in France”.

    Finally, 15 percent believe that this technology could “exacerbate the digital divide” in the country.

    Faced with this, respondents willing to share this type of data to enable them to travel represent only 13. This proportion reaches 31 percent among Germans.

    “Vaccine passports are not the problem. Making them digital is, especially without solid guarantees. A paper version offers privacy in a way its digital counterpart can’t, while also helping those who are less tech savvy or don’t have smartphones. For international travel, many countries still require physical passports for security and data protection – this shouldn’t be any different,” said Harold Li, president of ExpressVPN, as quoted by CNews.

    This study was carried out on a sample of 1000 French people representative of the population between March 24 and 29.

    WHO advises against it

    On April 19, the WHO emergency committee on Covid indicated that it was not in favour of a compulsory vaccination passport for international travellers, even if some think the practice seems to be attractive.

    In a statement, quoted by AFP, experts responsible for guiding WHO management recommend “not to require proof of vaccination as a condition of entry” for international travellers “given the limited evidence (although increasing) regarding the performance of vaccines in reducing transmission and given the persistent inequality in global vaccine distribution”.

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