How to protect personal data on France’s paper Covid-19 health pass

France’s protection agency claims that a lot of personal information is easily readable on paper versions of France’s pass sanitaire

Data protection is a big problem in France and the EU. Sometimes the answers are blindingly obvious, as is the case of personal information being readily available on paper versions of France’s Covid-19 health pass.

The pass sanitaire is expected to be a tool in containing Covid-19 when confinement rules in France are next eased on June 9.

While the Tous Anti Covid application displays just a QR code, the paper version displays all information – a person’s name, their Covid-19 health status, and even the brand of vaccine they may have received.

Following criticism from the Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) over the ease at which private information could be collected from paper versions of the pass sanitaire, France’s national health authority Assurance maladie suggested an easy, simple – and free – solution.

Its solution? Fold the document, so that personal information is hidden from view while whoever wants to scan the document sees only the QR code.

It remains to be seen whether the CNIL will be convinced of this method. France’s pass sanitaire will be required from June 9 to attend large scale events, and will work in conjunction with an EU-wide scheme to ease cross-border travel.


Leave a Reply