Coronavirus | Health & Safety | National | Privacy

Federally-backed tracking app announced

June 19, 2020

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said today he hopes Canadians will download a new app on their cellphones, COVID Alert, that could inform them if they’ve come into contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. The technology works by having people who test positive upload their results anonymously to the app using a temporary code given to them by a healthcare provider.

The project has been spearheaded by the Canadian Digital Service, the Ontario Digital Service, and with help from volunteers from Shopify. It incorporates Bluetooth technology provided by Apple and Google and will undergo a security review by BlackBerry.

Ontario hopes to have the app available for download on July 2 for iPhones running iOS 5.0 or later and for Android phones running Android 6.0 or later. The federal government wants to eventually have it in use across Canada in the coming months as the threat of a potential second wave of infections looms.

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