UA_Analytica_21_2020

COVID-19 AND THE SURVEILLANCE STATE: A NEW PRETEXT FOR LIMITING PERSONAL FREEDOMS AND DISSENT IN THE POST-SOVIET SPACE

COVID-19 has seen a number of governments in the post-Soviet region enhance their law enforcement and surveillance capabilities. Governments are leveraging existing technologies to police COVID-19 lockdowns and using the pandemic as a test case for new forms of tracking citizens. In the absence of a clear end date to the pandemic, there is an emerging threat of governments’ maintaining enhanced restrictions on fundamental freedoms and employing surveillance technology indefinitely as a means of suppressing dissent. The international community will need to improve its understanding of these threats, and integrate them into policy responses to democratic deficiencies in the region.



Eimear O’Casey

Eimear O’Casey is a senior analyst on the post-Soviet region at a risk consultancy in London, UK. She provides assessments of a range of political and policy developments in the region for public and private sector organisations, and has published analysis with New Eastern Europe and the UK’s Foreign Policy Centre. She has a particular interest in authoritarian governance models, elections, and corruption.


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