Will you be downloading the COVIDSafe app?

THE Federal Government has launched its new voluntary coronavirus app, COVIDSafe.

The contact tracing app has been introduced in aim to provide more information about Australia's COVID-19 cases and ensure tracking can be carried out.

Using Bluetooth, the app records anyone you get close to (within 1.5 metres) for 15 minutes or more who also has the app.

The two apps exchange anonymised IDs, which cycle every two hours and are stored encrypted on phones and deleted after 21 days.

Already today Australians have flagged a number of issues with the app including problems in both the ease of the download and the use of the software, however the number of downloads in 24 hours has surpassed two million. 


Will you be downloading the COVIDSafe app?

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Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan has called on his constituents to follow his lead and download the app. 

"It is going to help us lift restrictions and get businesses open sooner," Mr Hogan said.

"By downloading this app, you will save lives and you will save livelihoods.

"It's important Australians know we are winning this battle, but it's not over yet.

"Downloading the app will get us one step closer to normality resuming."

Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan.
Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan. Nationals

"The more people who download this app, the safer our community will be and the sooner restrictions can be safely lifted."

"This uses technology to automate and improve what health officials already do manually."

"COVIDSafe speeds up the process of identifying people who have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with coronavirus, quickly stopping further spread of the virus in the community."

To be effective, users should have the app running in the background when they are coming into contact with others. Your phone does not need to be unlocked for the app to work. It then securely makes a "digital handshake", which notes the date and time, distance and duration of the contact. All information collected by the app is securely encrypted and stored in the app on the user's phone. No-one, not even the user, can access it.

Unless and until a person is diagnosed with COVID-19, no contact information collected in the app is disclosed or able to be accessed.

Then once the person agrees and uploads the data, only the relevant public health officials will have access to information. The only information they are allowed to access is that of close contacts - when a person has come within approximately 1.5 metres of another app user for 15 minutes or more.

"Once the coronavirus pandemic is over and Australia no longer needs the app, the app and the information on it will be deleted permanently," he said.

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