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Brussels Airport in hot water over temperature checks

Published: (Updated: ) in European News by .

The Belgian data protection authority said it was “concerned.”

Temperature checks at Brussels Airport may violate privacy rules, the country’s data protection watchdog has warned.

The airport started the temperature checks — intended to root out passengers with coronavirus — as part of a European Union Aviation Safety Agency pilot scheme earlier this week.

But today the Belgian data protection authority said it was “concerned” about the checks, noting that there is currently no legal basis for the practice. It said it had contacted the airport to better understand the system.

Brussels Airport did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

It is not the first time the Belgian watchdog has weighed in on temperature checks, which are increasingly considered a key tool in keeping on top of the pandemic. It issued guidelines on the practice in May.

The French data protection authority also warned today that plans to deploy thermal cameras and other “smart” devices to keep a handle on the coronavirus pandemic may foul foul of data protection rules, while the Dutch data protection authority in April said those implementing thermal checks “risked fines.”


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