April 3, 2020

COVID-19: Resources

Data, supplies, community: how Microsoft is supporting efforts to combat COVID-19
Family, friends and co-workers around the world are facing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Managing response efforts requires the cooperation of every sector of society – governments, businesses, non-profit organizations and individuals.

Responding to COVID-19 together
As the world responds to the outbreak of COVID-19, our thoughts are with the people affected and the medical professionals working around the clock to help those most in need.

COVID-19: Industry News & Response

Business Insider Microsoft’s coronavirus map lets you track the number of COVID-19 cases — including recoveries — in countries around the world and every US state
A map recently created by Microsoft’s Bing team gives people an easy way to observe the spread of COVID-19.

Economic Times This artificial intelligence tool can predict which Covid-19 patient is likely to develop respiratory disease
Scientists have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) tool that may accurately predict which patients newly infected with the virus that causes Covid-19 would go on to develop severe respiratory disease.

Live Science Activities and online resources for homebound kids: A coronavirus guide
Schools worldwide have closed in response to COVID-19, leaving parents and caregivers scrambling to find daily activities for their children that are educational, creative and entertaining.

Wall Street Journal Government Tracking How People Move Around in Coronavirus Pandemic
Government officials across the U.S. are using location data from millions of cellphones in a bid to better understand the movements of Americans during the coronavirus pandemic and how they may be affecting the spread of the disease.


Washington Post The Cybersecurity 202: Coronavirus response is officially a new front in the election security fight
The brief detente in partisan bickering over how to ensure people are safe to vote – and their votes are safe – amid the coronavirus pandemic just burst into open warfare.

TechCrunch Elizabeth Warren for President open-sources its 2020 campaign tech
Democratic senator Elizabeth Warren may have ended her 2020 presidential run, but the tech used to drive her campaign will live on.

Delaware Online Biden launches ‘Here’s the Deal’ podcast as campaign ramps up digital side amid coronavirus
Former Vice President Joe Biden launched a podcast Sunday night, his presidential campaign’s latest effort to remain in the national conversation amid the coronavirus crisis.

Chicago Tribune Facebook, Google and Twitter struggle to handle November’s election
The day after the New Hampshire primary last month, Facebook’s security team removed a network of fake accounts that originated in Iran, which had posted divisive partisan messages about the U.S. election inside private Facebook groups.


The Hill Democratic Senators urge FTC to prevent coronavirus price gouging
A group of 17 Democratic Senators sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Friday urging it to do more to combat price gouging amid the coronavirus pandemic.

FedScoop Federal agencies collaborate on developing 3D-printed masks
Three federal agencies have banded together to develop 3D printing models for masks as hospital systems run low on personal protective equipment during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Washington Post Federal officials scramble to ensure tech glitches, bureaucracy don’t delay $1,200 coronavirus checks
U.S. officials are scrambling to stand up a new system to send coronavirus stimulus checks to millions of Americans, raising fresh fears that technical glitches and mismanagement could undermine a centerpiece of the Trump administration’s economic-recovery effort.


The New York Times New York Attorney General Looks Into Zoom’s Privacy Practices Street Journal 
Zoom, the videoconferencing app whose traffic has surged during the coronavirus pandemic, is under scrutiny by the office of New York’s attorney general, Letitia James, for its data privacy and security practices.

Ars Technica Court: Violating a site’s terms of service isn’t criminal hacking
A federal court in Washington, DC, has ruled that violating a website’s terms of service isn’t a crime under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, America’s primary anti-hacking law. The lawsuit was initiated by a group of academics and journalists with the support of the American Civil Liberties Union.

AP News School shutdowns raise stakes of digital divide for students
Students struggling to get online in a rural South Carolina county received a boost last week with the arrival of six buses equipped with Wi-Fi, some of the hundreds the state has rolled out since schools were closed by the coronavirus outbreak.

Harvard Business Review What the Shift to Virtual Learning Could Mean for the Future of Higher Ed
Tectonic shifts in society and business occur when unexpected events force widespread experimentation around a new idea. During World War II, for instance, when American men went off to war, women proved that they could do “men’s” work — and do it well. Women never looked back after that.

Wall Street Journal Washington State OKs Facial Recognition Law Seen as National Model
Washington state adopted a Microsoft Corp. -backed law enshrining the most detailed regulations of facial recognition in the U.S., potentially serving as a model for other states as use of the technology grows. Gov. Jay Inslee signed the law Tuesday allowing government agencies to use facial recognition, with restrictions designed to ensure it isn’t deployed for broad surveillance or tracking innocent people. The law makes Washington’s policy stricter than many states that don’t have any laws governing the technology, but more permissive than at least seven U.S. municipalities that have blocked government from using it out of concerns about privacy violations and bias.

CNET The FCC sets a vote on opening the 6GHz band for unlicensed Wi-Fi use
The Federal Communications Commission announced a potentially significant step for Wi-Fi today, with plans for an April 23 vote on a proposal to open the 6GHz band for unlicensed Wi-Fi use. Doing so would free up more than 1,200MHz of additional bandwidth for next-gen Wi-Fi 6E devices with antennas and chipsets capable of tapping into the extra spectrum.


The Pew Research Center

  • Research on COVID-19 and Connectivity 
    As the spread of COVID-19 upends work, classes and even doctor appointments across the country, a majority of Americans are turning to digital means to stay connected and track information about the outbreak. Amid this increased reliance, about nine-in-ten U.S. adults (93%) say that a major interruption to their internet or cellphone service during the outbreak would be a problem in their daily life, including 49% who foresee an outage being a very big problem for them and 28% who believe it would be a moderately big problem. But while digital connections may provide an alternative during a time of social distancing, only a minority (27%) thinks interacting via these technologies will be as effective as in-person contact. Some 64% of Americans think the internet and phones will help but are not a replacement for face-to-face encounters. (Fact TankAmericans turn to technology during COVID-19 outbreak, say an outage would be a problem, March 31, 2020)

Note: Voices for Innovation regularly shares a range of opinion articles and press releases from organizations in and publications covering tech policy. These pieces are meant to educate our audience, not to endorse specific platforms or bills.