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Thursday, November 05, 2020

UK Contact Tracing Apps Talk to Each Other

Interesting look at these and comparison to other Tracing Apps in europe. Clear contribution to decrease in spread?

UK contact-tracing apps start to talk to each other in the BBC

The United Kingdom's various contact-tracing apps can now intercommunicate, allowing people to be matched from the different areas they cover.   Until now, users needed to download separate Covid-19 apps and change settings if - for example - they travelled from England to Scotland. Those who already have one of the apps do not need to do anything to make the new system work.

However, the apps do not communicate with other European equivalents.

The products that have become interoperable are:

England and Wales's NHS Covid-19

Northern Ireland's StopCOVID

Protect Scotland

Jersey COVID Alert

Beat COVID Gibraltar

The apps all use Bluetooth signals to log when two people's smartphones come into close proximity to each other.  These readings can then be used if one person becomes infected with coronavirus and registers the fact, to let others know if they were nearby for long enough to need to self-isolate.  All the apps are now able to access the anonymised IDs of people who tested positive because they have begun sharing a computer server set up by Scotland via Amazon Web Services.  .... "

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