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COVIDsafe: Australian Government Launches Coronavirus Tracing App

The app is part of the government's strategy to identify, trace and isolate the virus

The Australian government has officially launched COVIDsafe, an app that is part of the ongoing strategy to identify, trace and isolate the virus spread. 

The app, based on source code from Singapore’s Tracetogether software, maintains a log of Bluetooth connections a person’s phone makes with the phones of those they have come into contact with, making it easier for health authorities to trace potential COVID-19 carriers in the case of a positive diagnosis.

COVIDSafe recognises other devices with the COVIDSafe app installed and Bluetooth enabled,” the description reads. “When the app recognises another user, it notes the date, time, distance and duration of the contact and the other user’s reference code. The COVIDSafe app does not collect your location.” 

The app has already been downloaded over 1 million times. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said downloading the app was not mandatory, and instead has likened it to civic duty. He also flagged it as a necessary step to relaxing restrictions. 

“The COVIDSafe app is about assisting, finding those cases which may be undiagnosed in the community, helping people get early treatment, helping people have early diagnosis and to ensure that our doctors and nurses, our health workers, our families and friends are protected and that will save lives and protect lives,” Health Minister Greg Hunt said as the app launched. 

You can download the app here

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