Bennett at the Security and Policy Conference of the Institute for Policy
Bennett at the Security and Policy Conference of the Institute for PolicyAmos Ben-Gershom (GPO)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz have decided to end the Shin Bet's (Shabak) tracking of suspected Omicron carriers. The decision will take effect at midnight tonight.

An official statement noted that, "At midnight, emergency regulations approved by the government for the use of cellular locations by the General Security Service (Shabak) for locating verified people with the Omicron strain will expire.

"In accordance with the predefined policy decided upon in the Coronavirus Cabinet, according to which the use of Shabak tracking will be done sparingly and reviewed on a daily basis, and in view of the current situation assessment, the Prime Minister and the Health Minister, following consultation with experts in the Health Ministry, have decided not to continue at this stage with the activation of the tracking, which contributed in the last week to the effort of cutting off the chains of infection. The reactivation of the tracking will be examined according to circumstances."

Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz wrote on Twitter, "The tracking will stop. I emphasized from the first moment that the use of this tool will be limited in duration and extent - just for a few days, to obtain urgent information to stop the transmission of a new and unknown variant. And that's exactly what we did. Now we are stopping it, because in addition to protecting health, we must also protect privacy and human rights, even in an emergency."