COVID Alert smartphone application now available in Ontario

The app uses Bluetooth to determine whether your phone has been in close contact with the phone of another app user who reports testing positive for COVID-19.
August 04, 2020
Justin Tang/The Canadian Press

The federal government has developed a smartphone app, called COVID Alert, that uses Bluetooth technology to exchange signals with other phones yours gets close to. It will notify users if, during the past two weeks, they have spent at least 15 minutes within two metres of the phone of any other app user who reports that they have tested positive for COVID-19. Ontarians can choose whether or not to download and activate the app on their smartphones.

Because the app uses Bluetooth and not GPS technology, the government of Canada says COVID Alert is less invasive and more considerate of privacy than contact-tracing apps used in some other countries. Canada’s federal Privacy Commissioner and Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner have both endorsed the app as long as it remains voluntary to download and use. So far, the government of Ontario is the only province to adopt the federal notification app, although discussions are underway with the Atlantic provinces right now and the Canadian government hopes other provinces will follow.

Source: CBC News



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