Concerns raised about using surveillance technology to track clergy – Catholic World Report

The prospect of private parties using national security-style surveillance technology to track the movements and activities of bishops, priests, and other Church personnel is raising concerns about civil liberties, privacy rights and what means are ethical to use in Church reform efforts. The issue was first raised in 2018, when a person concerned with reforming the Catholic clergy approached some Church individuals and organizations, including Catholic News Agency. This party claimed to have access to technology capable of identifying clergy and others who download popular “hook-up” apps, such as Grindr and Tinder, and to pinpoint their locations using the internet addresses of their computers or mobile devices. The proposal was to provide this information privately to Church officials in the hopes that they would discipline or remove those found to be using these technologies to violate their clerical vows and possibly bring scandal to the Church. CNA and others at the time declined this party’s offer, but there are reports this week of a similar scheme targeting allegedly active homosexual priests. The U.S. government’s widespread use of surveillance technology to monitor individuals has been widely known since the 2013 revelations of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

Concerns raised about using surveillance technology to track clergy – Catholic World Report

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