Report: Cabinet restricts Shin Bet surveillance of virus carriers

The cabinet votes to approve curtailing the Shin Bet security agency’s powers of surveillance to track down coronavirus carriers and those exposed to them, according to the Ynet news site.

The agency will now only use surveillance in exceptional cases, when other means fail, the report says.

It says the proposal was introduced by Netanyahu and all ministers, except for Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz, backed it.

The Shin Bet had previously been given the green light to monitor Israelis via phone tracking to curb the virus spread.

The decision to scale back comes amid a significant drop in the number of cases.

And it comes after the High Court of Justice ruled that the Shin Bet cannot continue unless the government anchors the controversial surveillance in law. The government began the process of legislating the move, but now appears to be abandoning it.

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