Concerns remain over technical shortfalls of COVIDSafe app

Issues relating to public education about the app raise serious concerns: ACCAN.

Concerns over COVIDSafe app

The Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) says that it continues to have concerns about the technical shortfalls of the government’s COVIDSafe app and also pointed out issues with public education on its use.

ACCAN has highlighted a need for clear, easy to understand education about privacy aspects of the app and how it operates.

ACCAN chief executive Teresa Corbin said the government needed to do more to combat misinformation about what the app was actually able to achieve.

“There’s quite a bit of confusion amongst some consumers as to what the app does,” Ms Corbin explained.

“We’ve heard cases where older Australians, in particular, are concerned that without the COVIDSafe app, they’re missing out on some sort of personal protection from COVID-19.

“We need to make sure that any public messaging focuses on the app’s contribution to community safety, rather than individual safety.”

The YourLifeChoices post-pandemic survey, which attracted over 4500 responses, showed a mixed reaction to downloading the government's app.

There were 2118 respondents who said they had already downloaded the app, compared to 1611 who had not downloaded the app.

While those numbers suggest a strong take-up, there were 845 people that chose to skip the questions, suggesting a much higher degree of scepticism about data protection and the surveillance aspects of the app.

Ms Corbin, though, welcomed the passage of the Privacy Amendment (Public Health Contact Information) Bill 2020 last week, explaining that it was a key step to ensuring appropriate safeguards are in place to protect the privacy of Australians using the COVIDSafe app.

Ms Corbin said that she was pleased that the legislation was amended to tackle a number of concerns raised by ACCAN and other consumer groups across the fields of health, technology, privacy, human rights, digital inclusion, communications and community interests.

“We welcome the new transparency and accountability measures that have been incorporated into the bill, such as a requirement for the minister for health to produce a report to parliament on the operation and effectiveness of the COVIDSafe app, and an expanded oversight role for the Australian information commissioner and privacy commissioner,” Ms Corbin said.

“We know that for vulnerable groups, such as survivors of domestic violence, there is anxiety about whether someone could deduce who their close contacts are and when and for how long they have visited them.”

Have you downloaded the COVIDSafe app? What are your concerns?

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    COMMENTS

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    Viking
    19th May 2020
    10:58am
    I haven't downloaded the app because my phone only has Android 5.5 which is inadequate for the app. I question the point in releasing an app which many older people in particular who don't need the latest phones cannot use. I also question the effectiveness of the need to be within 1.5m of an infected person for 15 minutes as the vast majority of situations that I foresee would be outside of those parameters.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    2:36pm
    The distance /time has been chosen because that's when the virus can spread, you're not going to catch anything walking past each other but sitting in a cafe for 30 minutes is where the chances are far higher, same as on public transport, in church waiting at the doctor, all those lengthy activities.

    The app is a replacement for the contact tracing that's currently done now, they interview you and ask where you've been in the last two weeks and you'd say at ABC cafe, doctors waiting room, etc. They then contact those places to advise them your're a positive case and others who were near you maybe found and tested.

    In regards to the phone's capability, well that's completely normal, most apps are only written for recent phones.
    Viking
    19th May 2020
    4:17pm
    Greg,
    We don't have public transport in our area , the last time I went on a bus was two years ago in Austria. Our doctor's and dentist's surgeries have seats 2m apart and they call to report any delay to keep the waiting rooms clear. Surgeries anyway have signs that tell you to switch your phone off. Our local outdoor cafe tables are further apart. The sporting club I belong to tells members to stay in their cars until a place is available when they will call. I am not a moron as you previously accused me and others but I don't live in the Singaporian conditions for which this app was designed. Given the low level of infection in Australia and the volume of aerosol from just one infected sneeze a 30 second contact up to 2m would be more appropriate. I wll be interested to hear just how many infected contacts this app detects, my bet is not many.
    Jenny
    19th May 2020
    6:14pm
    I would have been quite happy to download the app, but my phone says "no". And I don't intend to throw away a perfectly good smartphone just so I can spend hundreds of dollars on a new one with the rifgt operating system.
    Jenny
    19th May 2020
    6:16pm
    I meant right, of course.
    Ted Wards
    20th May 2020
    9:46am
    Well if you've visited any restaurants or cafes they now get you to either fill out of covid-19 form which can be used for tracing or use a QR code that records your information. There's no way anyone who is out and about will not be traced whether you want it or not.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    2:57pm
    Jenny, you don't have to spend hundreds for a new one and still have your phone replaced every 1 or 2 years depending on which payment contract you are able to sign up for!
    Much better and you get lots of good internet deals options as well with it!
    No need to stick to a vintage model!
    Greg
    21st May 2020
    3:45pm
    You just don't get it do you.

    The app is for GOING FORWARD into the weeks/months ahead when restrictions will be lessened, long term until a vaccine becomes available. All the things you are talking about is how they are NOW and in some places they don't have seats 2 metres apart and some people do use public transport. But again the selfishness in you comes out, me, me, me, that's all that matters.

    The app is for CONTACT TRACING, it's being done now manually, the app is more efficient, more thorough. No wonder I called you a moron, you fit the name well.
    Horace Cope
    19th May 2020
    11:19am
    "Have you downloaded the COVIDSafe app? What are your concerns?"

    No, unable to download the app because my smart phone is not as smart as the government thinks it is. It has an operating system of 5.1.1 which is below the 6 needed to accept the app. I would use it if I could but my 'phone works for me and I'm not one who updates just because there is a new one on the market.

    I have no concerns with the app and I disagree that there has been insufficient information by government. My understanding is that there are no privacy concerns as the app doesn't identify whose 'phone is near another with the app nor does it identify the place where the incident is happening. Any other information has been because of people who appear to be paranoid about anything the government does with technology. These people are easily identifiable as they invariably wear cooking foil caps to stop the government reading their thoughts.
    Canuck
    19th May 2020
    11:23am
    I too cannot download the app because my iOS is not as up to date as the most recent products. A phone call to the Help Line for downloading the app was unable to give me any assistance or advise and just said "thank you for trying". It would be interesting to know how many people have issues compared to how many have actually downloaded the app.
    pedro the swift
    19th May 2020
    11:41am
    If you believe this app is secure you will also believe the government hasnt had various databases hacked and other data bases are also secure. This app is another "furphy ' foisted on the public which I see as of being no use at all in its intended purpose!
    Sceptic
    19th May 2020
    12:29pm
    Keep your tinfoil hat on and you will be okay like me. I checked on Facebook and Twitter and so I am concerned about privacy.
    Florgan
    19th May 2020
    1:41pm
    i agree pedro the swift.
    how about an app to track pedophiles and murderers etc
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    2:49pm
    You better go hide in a cave, don't use a phone, don't use a PC. This virus was brought about to allow 5G in, Bill Gates will make a motsa of of the vaccine, the world is flat and the government is interested in all your movements.

    Bloody hell, you paranoid people are funny, the only data the app has is your phone number, wow such an important and private item. It can't trace you, you don't need GPS turned on so it's not possible. Phones can't use triangulation themselves BUT the gov can if need be, so they already can find out where you are IF THEY WANTED, and FFS WHY would they be interested in where you are, 25 million people, what makes YOU so special.

    "I see as of being no use at all in its intended purpose!"

    Well you obviously do not understand what the app does, it's intended purpose is to trace positive cases to see who they have been near in the last 14 days. This tracing has been going on since the first cases were found, a positive case is asked where they have been in the last 14 days, such as doctors waiting room or the ABC Cafe, then contact tracing happens to try to find the people who were in those places too and get them tested.

    All this app does is automates that process, that's it, so is very useful in it's intended purpose.
    Jim
    19th May 2020
    11:50am
    I see the few comments so far all state they can’t download the app, I am in the same boat, although I did download the app onto my cheap Malaysian phone, but it wouldn’t download onto my wife’s more expensive phone from Vodafone which we purchased when we had to go onto 3G, I have no concerns with privacy, I went to the ACCAN site to see what their concerns are and viewed the letter they had sent to the government regarding those concerns, most of the concerns have already been covered by the legislation in place in both State and Federal legislation. Some of the concerns do relate to access to the app on some phones, and in remote areas, also women’s groups that deal with domestic violence, the indigenous community and other at risk groups, their solution is to provide phones to those at risk groups and to provide more reliable services in remote areas and to reduce costs for internet services, all of these suggestions are commendable, but I don’t know if they are practical, Australia is such a vast country and the cost to provide services to remote areas must be difficult if not impossible in some areas, maybe satellite services might be the answer but I don’t know how reliable they are.
    David
    19th May 2020
    11:54am
    I have no intention of downloading the COVID19 app as I have a great mistrust in govts of any political persuasion. Same goes for my e health record. Call me suspicious, but I am yet to be convinced as to its security from hackers etc & whether once a vaccine is found whether govts will delete your COVID19 app?BTW. Why are some restaurants asking people when dining in to provide their details (tracking purposes I assume) if these people have downloaded the app?
    Sceptic
    19th May 2020
    12:32pm
    Maybe you need a lesson on how to delete apps.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    2:56pm
    David YOU delete apps NOT the gov, Haha.

    Your comment just proves your ignorance of technology and how it can help you and others.

    What are hackers going to get from the app, all it has is your phone number. Name, birth range postcode are required but can be made up, the phone number is the ONLY item required to be able to get a SMS message if need be.

    Yes restaurants want contact details for contact tracing and that's all this app does, it automates the CURRENT process of contact tracing that has been happening for over two months now. I would assume that they are getting these details because fools like you haven't downloaded the app.
    JoJozep
    19th May 2020
    12:03pm
    No, I haven't downloaded the app nor will I as it stands. Here are my obvious reasons.

    1. I have an Iphone 5 SE, so to start with, its battery capacity when fully charged I would guess is 80% of original capacity.
    Using Bluetooth 24 hours per day, would drain it to zero in about 12 hours or less. To me that's bullshit! period.

    2. I don't mingle with other people or socialize except with close family relatives. For me to spend 15 minutes with other people at close quarters, and I would guess less than 1.5 metres apart, say on public transport would be so rare, I wouldn't consider it anyway.

    3. Does the app start emitting warning signals as soon as it detects another case nearby? Does it tell me that a person is infected? What do I do on the bus or train or an escalator in shopping centers or lifts in multistory buildings, kick the offending person, or throttle him/her for bringing the Covid 19 virus into range? Or do I carry a plastic shield and ram it in the other person's face? As far as I know, it doesn't do any of these things.

    Someone please explain if this doesn't make the app totally useless as a warning device except to accumulate personal data and be advised 3-4 days later you have been in touch with a C19 carrier days before and you might have been infected. What does this do to your anxiety level? I know this would scare the shit out of me for a week till I got tested and hopefully came out negative. If I came out positive, "whoopee" I'm slowly moving up the queue to go to hopefully God!

    If this is the case, how does the app protect me personally? It doesn't. Bullshit hype from the government to pretend they're doing something. God, 6 million Australians downloaded the app? makes me wonder at least how many people think these impositions through.

    How about an app that monitors my body temperature and transmits this to any Bluetooth device nearby, which then sounds warning signals to all other Bluetooth devices within range and also to some government data agency nearby. Then I would be made aware, that person next to me is safe or not to be near. I think people assume this is what the app does. It doesn't.

    Also, I use my Iphone to talk to people, not for Facebook , or other time wasting messages back and forth. Can'r people see, mobiles are controlling our lives?
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:12pm
    My God, all the information you are asking about is freely available online to read. Obviously you have NO IDEA how this app works, yet you won't download it because blah, blah, blah. YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW IT WORKS, FFS, if you knew maybe you would use it.

    The app IS NOT to warn you about people nearby who maybe positive.

    The app is purely to AUTOMATE what currently happens when contact tracing.

    Currently if you test positive the health dept interviews you and asks where you have been over the last 14 days, you may have been in a doctors waiting room or the number 452 bus from A to B. The health dept tries to trace who you may have been in contact with in that waiting room or that bus.

    The app records in encrypted code when you have been near another app enabled phone for 15 mins or more and within around 1.5 metres. It doesn't know where on this Earth you were it only knows you were near phone ABGFGTRFGF.

    Anyone who tests positive in the future will be asked to upload their contact details ie the encrypted codes of the people who they were near for those times/distances, than all those people get an SMS to say they should be tested as they may have been infected.

    That's it, that's all the app does, it purely replaces what happens currently but is more accurate and the other people can be more easily contacted. You don't get an alert when you are near the person, you get nothing, it happens in the background and you can't access the information, you'd never know until you get the SMS.

    And your whinge about Bluetooth is crap - turn on the Bluetooth when you go out and leave it off otherwise. On my phone I haven't noticed any reduction in battery life, it's very low powered Bluetooth and makes no difference.
    Anonymous
    19th May 2020
    3:44pm
    Hey JoJozep use your brains man they don't advise you of any illness on the day, you always have to wait for the results of tests maybe weeks in some cases. At least this app will alert you and with any sort of luck you maybe cleared after you have been tested.
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:27pm
    Great commenting JoJoZep, and I agree, it is a waste of money and effort, I too don't get close enough to people, after all we are being told to keep our distance.
    Hoohoo
    22nd May 2020
    11:57am
    I ask everyone this: Who has EVER read the Terms & Conditions of ANYTHING in full?
    No-one, because they're designed to make you stop reading by being deliberately difficult to understand, use theme-specific jargon and, to the lay person, they continually seem to repeat themselves.
    The ONLY people who might read them in full are those with the legal and techno knowledge, the patience of Job and hours of time on their hands. Anyone on this site?

    Greg, I believe you are being insulting with your "blah, blah, blah..." comment. It is everyone's right to be suspicious of government departments, especially in light of Robodebt and that ruthless people like Peter Dutton are federal Ministers. What have these ones ever done to engender trust in them?

    I am not one for so-called conspiracy theories but that doesn't mean there aren't very good reasons to question the status quo. The fake news of Trump, Newscorp, etc., only add to the confusion and mistrust for intelligent people who are genuinely trying to seek the truth. Ironically perhaps, Flat Earth believers are predominantly pro-Trump.
    Skeeta
    19th May 2020
    12:03pm
    I'd like it to be confirmed that all people in Australia who have tested positive to the covid-19 virus have been made/compulsory to download and keep the app on their phones, otherwise having the app on my phone will not detect if I have been close to an infected person.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:15pm
    Ideally everyone should download it BEFORE being positive, unfortunately too many pigheaded, ignorant, selfish people won't.

    The app replaces what currently happens in a manual process by the health dept, so currently you may be near an infected person and not know, same with the app but at least if lots of people have the app a lot more contact tracing can happen.
    Veritas
    19th May 2020
    12:16pm
    I don’t get the COVID—Safe APP. The app warns if you were in contact with a person who tested positive. If someone tested positive back in March, why should you care? They’re no longer contagious.

    When a person tests positive, they isolate for 14 days to not spread the virus. Getting close to them would near-on impossible.

    If a psychopath tested positive yesterday, why would they download the app—they’re a psychopath? Even if they had the app, a psychopath would delete it because they’re foaming at the mouth and want to kill as many as possible.

    Each morning without fail, I get a COVID-Safe APP alerting me to keep the app open (almost as alarming as a message from MyGov warning you have communications!) If you got warned about a positive contact, you'd ignore it because there’s only so many COVID-Safe APP warnings anyone can handle.

    I downloaded the app. I keep it open. But I still don't get it.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:30pm
    It's great you downloaded the app, here's how it works.

    Currently if a person is tested positive they are interviewed by the heath dept to find out where they been in the last two weeks, they see that you may have been on a bus, train, doctors waiting room, cafe, etc, they then try to contact those places and try to contact the people who may have been near you in those places.

    All the app does is automates that entire process, remember the app is for going forward as more things open back up, so at a cafe, church, on a bus, train, etc. If there are two or more phones with the app near each other for 15 mins or more each phone keeps an encrypted code of the meeting, that stays on the phone for 21 days and then is deleted. The app doesn't know where on this Earth you are only that you were near another app enabled phone.

    Now when a person is tested positive that person sends their contact information (those encrypted codes) to the health department who then sends an SMS to each person who was near that newly tested positive case and requested that they get tested also.

    That's it, that's all it does, automate the current process.

    Not everyone has symptoms or if they do they may walk around for a few days until tested, that's why the app looks at 14 days prior.

    Not sure why you get warnings everyday, I don't, never, I only turn on Bluetooth when going out and turn it off at home but never have had a warning.
    Rosret
    19th May 2020
    5:05pm
    Veritas there are a whole lot of frightened people out there. If this app gives the people the confidence to go back to work then its worth it.
    I have downloaded the app knowing I am very unlikely to be in a situation where I should be concerned. However if this app saves our children from a terrible economic depression then I am all for it.
    Veritas
    19th May 2020
    5:57pm
    Thanks, Greg for the explanation and it makes sense. My comment was a somewhat tongue-in-cheek and light-hearted look at the app in the wrong hands. I have the covid-safe app open 24 hours a day and it does not drain the battery, not that I've observed anyway. I wandered through the Redcliffe markets on Sunday. It was a challenge to keep 1.5 metres distant. I'd like to think the app offers some assurance as we get back to normal. The download rate appears to have stalled around the 5 million--short of the 10 million to make it viable. The message I get each day is to advise keeping the app running in the background and not switch is off.
    JoJozep
    19th May 2020
    12:22pm
    Yes Skeeta, A soon as they tell you (several days later) that you were next to an infected person, wouldn't you react? wouldn't your anxiety levels and blood pressure shoot through the roof, wouldn't this be enough to trigger a mental stroke? That's what happens to me.

    Wouldn't it be better if you were informed within seconds an infected person has moved into your circle so you could take evasive action. What's the point of catching the virus to be told several days later or symptoms appear to confirm your infection. DOOH!

    The point is, the app is useless to the person using it. Very clever marketing ploy by Apple by the way.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:33pm
    What the hell has Apple got to do with it???
    Hoohoo
    22nd May 2020
    12:16pm
    Yes, even more insidious than Apple (correctly as you say, Greg, has nothing to do with the COVID app), is Amazon, who are hosting the iCloud for the COVID app in Australia.

    Amazon is the reason why I won't download the app. I do not trust Amazon. Presently, in the USA, Amazon are sacking workers who have raised COVID-safety issues in their workplace. The irony is not lost on me. Here, Amazon is profiting from the iCloud app in Australia (our taxes are paying their bill), while Amazon sacks workers who are raising concerns about their lack of protection from COVID at Amazon workplaces.
    Billv
    19th May 2020
    12:24pm
    I won't download the app on principle. Don't trust the Govt for another method of obtaining personal information. Plus they have been hacked previously and there is no guarantee it won't happen again. I prefer my freedom and the right to it.
    Skeeta
    19th May 2020
    12:28pm
    Billy. I don't have any concerns about privacy, its a great way to help protect me. My question is "do infected people have the app on their phones, otherwise the process has a missing link"
    Eddy
    19th May 2020
    12:41pm
    The catchcry that the privacy of the App is 'protected by law' is not the least comforting to me. Many things are protected by law yet it makes no difference to any person who chooses to ignore the law. Take Domestic Violence Orders for instance, how many women have been attacked, and even killed, when they were 'protected by law', too many. Relying on 'law' or a piece of legal paper will not deter some individuals.
    I did not download the app because my $49 phone has neither Bluetooth nor the capability to download any app. My phone is a phone not a pocket computer.
    Eddy
    19th May 2020
    12:41pm
    The catchcry that the privacy of the App is 'protected by law' is not the least comforting to me. Many things are protected by law yet it makes no difference to any person who chooses to ignore the law. Take Domestic Violence Orders for instance, how many women have been attacked, and even killed, when they were 'protected by law', too many. Relying on 'law' or a piece of legal paper will not deter some individuals.
    I did not download the app because my $49 phone has neither Bluetooth nor the capability to download any app. My phone is a phone not a pocket computer.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:36pm
    Haha, another ignorant fool who is selfish as well.

    The app is there to help you and others.

    What information will anyone get.....YOU PHONE NUMBER, that's it. And that's IF they could get into your phone.

    Ignorance of how the app works is one thing but your selfishness is disgusting.
    Mondo
    20th May 2020
    4:01pm
    Greg, why would anyone buy a new phone or bother to download the app to protect abusive thugs the likes of you? The app isn't working and it wont work, this is a government stunt to prove they are doing something. Its the app version of the government's $138,000.000 million reopening of Christmas Island for 4 people at a further cost of $30,000,000 -so far! Remember the place that was purpose built for medical isolation with no medical facilities, so purpose built it was used only once!
    Hoohoo
    23rd May 2020
    6:05pm
    Greg, are you saying that information via the app is or is not metadata?
    Greg
    25th May 2020
    6:21pm
    Hoohoo - The app will send an encrypted code which shows the health department the details of other phones with the app that you were near for 15 mins at least. Those other phones will have name, phone number, age range and postcode. If those other people are concerned only their phone number needs to be correct so they can get a SMS.
    Hoohoo
    26th May 2020
    1:19pm
    Thanks, Greg, although you dodged my two question regarding Amazon and metadata.

    But it begs the question, why does the app collect all that personal information, when all people need to have is their correct phone number?

    So if I sign up, I won't give them my name, age range or postcode.

    I don't trust Health Departments, even though they employ many, many incredible, amazing, hardworking people. Health Departments are way too beholden to Big Pharma and Big Pharma's agendas.
    Greg
    26th May 2020
    11:12pm
    Hoohoo

    Yeah ALL that personal information, FFS, age RANGE and postcode, hardly personal.

    I have no idea if Amazon is the storage facility and I don't care, again age range and postcode, oh and ph no, such personal information, LOL

    Metadata - you like using that term, explain to me what YOU think it is and why it worries you?
    Greg
    26th May 2020
    11:20pm
    Hoohoo - why the age and postcode,

    Age - to determine the priority of getting you tested if the situation arose where they had to make a decision about who goes first. ie: if you're 80 you'd be high on the list, 20 down at the bottom. Most likely not used at all.
    Postcode - So the Health Dept has an idea where the virus maybe, they have a Heatmap of cases.
    Hoohoo
    28th May 2020
    1:49pm
    Greg, I'm not trying to dupe the health authorities of information that could be valuable to them. I'm trying to avoid giving my personal details to sinister criminals, who will inevitably hack in. This is THEIR job, criminal though it is it. They are well paid for their efforts. The less personal information I give them, the less chance they have of stealing my identity and fleecing me.

    As for metadata, our lawmakers have left it open for hacking, so that security forces and intelligence agencies can watch and detect people who might be planning acts of terror.

    I had a mobile phone call the other day. When I answered, it had a recorded message of a female speaking in an Asian language. I guess they sent it randomly and now they know my number is valid. I don't think I'll be downloading the app now.
    Sceptic
    19th May 2020
    12:35pm
    A good selection of idiots on the forum today.
    Tzuki
    19th May 2020
    1:48pm
    Heehee sceptic yup
    Viking
    19th May 2020
    1:52pm
    Yes I noticed your presence Sceptic.
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:31pm
    A good selection of know it all's too and those who attack others for their opinions.
    BillW41
    19th May 2020
    12:45pm
    I don't have a "smart" phone and don't intend getting one. I'm doubtful about the value of the "app" - 1.5m for 15 minutes! Who are they trying to kid?
    Viking
    19th May 2020
    1:59pm
    Totally agree BillW41 my views entirely. I have little concern about the security, I just don't foresee the circumstances of being within 1.5m of an infected person for 15 minutes.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:39pm
    If you understood what the app is for and how it's used you'd understand it's potential, but no doubt you'll stay ignorant and to hell with everyone else.
    Anonymous
    19th May 2020
    3:48pm
    You are correct Greg Viking isn't the sharpest tool in the shed
    Mondo
    19th May 2020
    7:21pm
    A couple of abusive thugs out on day release from Juvi.
    Tzuki
    19th May 2020
    1:45pm
    I have downloaded the app, but it is hardly ever on, because everytime I check, it it isn't active and to check my Permissions. So I check them and Battery Optimization is always off, even though I turn it to on all the time.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:40pm
    The app can't be turned on/off, it's always there ready for when you turn BLUETOOTH on, at that point the app becomes active. Turn Bluetooth off and the app is inactive.
    aussiecarer
    19th May 2020
    3:06pm
    Reasons to not download the app
    1. The inherent risks of leaving bluetooth on in crowded places without making users aware of the risks.
    2. Skepticism that the app is fit for the purpose
    3. Conflicts with other apps
    Bluetooth has to be kept on at all time for the COVID app to work. But even the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner advises you not to leave Bluetooth on for privacy reasons.
    Bluetooth is for connecting trusted devices at home or in a small office environment.
    The government is asking you to install the COIVD app – its purpose is to collect and swap information with others – it’s asking you to switch Bluetooth on and exchange data with other phones WITH your knowledge and consent.
    The privacy concerns arise because people usually have numerous apps on their phones that use (or misuse) Bluetooth. While Bluetooth is switched off their data is safe. But when Bluetooth is used in a public place, all these apps (not just the COVID app) start collecting and swapping information.
    Many installed apps have Bluetooth on by default after each upgrade, so the onus is on the phone user to manually keep turning Bluetooth off or uninstall these apps. If the computer geeks can be believed, some phones that are made in China also have the ability to send data collected from apps, photos taken and even sms content back to China every 10 minutes.
    The PM said download the COVID app so we can get back to the footy. But it’s unlikely that the app would work properly at the footy if everyone used it simultaneously. Bluetooth is renown for poor connections in crowded trains and sporting events. This is because only 79 apps can simultaneously use bluetooth within a 12m radius. So if I’m standing in the middle of a group of 20 people, who all have 10 apps running in the background on their phones - that’s 200 apps trying to use bluetooth. All those apps keep retrying to get the information due to the overload. They all get incomplete information so they have another go at getting the information. The end result? My phone gets hot and goes flat quickly and the app hasn’t collected the data it’s supposed to collect anyway.
    3) Conflicts with other apps - Bluetooth-enabled glucose monitors are conflicting with the COVIDSafe app.
    Greg
    19th May 2020
    3:53pm
    aussiecarer - funny profile name since you DON'T care at all, if you did care about others you'd use the app.

    Your understanding of Bluetooth is flawed, badly flawed.

    The app is to replace what currently happens when a person is tested positive, it works far better than the current way of asking the person where they have been in the last two weeks, obviously they may forget, leave out details, etc, where as the app knows.

    The app DOES NOT collect and swap information it purely logs an encrypted code on each phone, that's it and it's deleted after 21 days.

    The Bluetooth when used in this app is very low powered, it only need to travel that 1.5 metres, being in a crowd of 20 people you're not all going to be close enough to all those people. You mentioned a 12 metre radius....NOPE, no where near that far for this app.

    You know a little information can be dangerous, when you understand something completely you can than make a prudent decision. Maybe one day you'll understand totally but I guess it won't change your mind as you have decided it's not for you and most likely you are too stubborn to change your mind.
    Thoughtful
    19th May 2020
    4:37pm
    Greg - calm down and look after yourself. You can't legislate against stupid. What so many of the older generation do not realise is that everything we are trying to do is to protect the community as a whole and not the individual. Same as you cannot make people understand about the benefits to the community of wearing masks - it is not for the individual. All of you narcissistic people please try and understand. The same as vaccination is about herd immunity not individual immunity.

    I have given a great deal of thought re the app not working on older phones but have comforted myself with the thought that it is mainly the younger people who have newer phones who are the most likely to require contact tracing the way this app works. I am more concerned about older people congregating in shops where a virus is more likely to be airborn due to lack of ventilation. The app doesn't help older people fossicking around for their cash instead of tapping and getting out asap!
    Hoohoo
    23rd May 2020
    6:08pm
    Again Greg, is information via the app metadata or not?
    GrayComputing
    19th May 2020
    5:24pm
    It would have been great if this app actually worked which it does not.
    And if there was a 100% safe place in this planet to store the database, which there isn't.
    There are no 100% secure computers since 1965 nor any 100% cyber security on any phones.
    Bluetooth software has been hacked so many times that it is a sad joke.
    I did over 30 years in cyber security and we still do not have no safe or secure hardware or software systems.
    So you can guess I did NOT download this app.
    Thoughtful
    19th May 2020
    5:41pm
    Understood and I know somebody else with similar experience who says the same. My question is just what information that can be hacked from this app is a concern? Is it because say banking details etc could be taken from your phone?

    I also understand the short-comings with the app; especially with iphones but surely this just means it doesn't work as well as it could. ( Does anything? )
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:35pm
    Interesting Greg and others have not argued with you here.
    Mondo
    20th May 2020
    3:50pm
    Incognito, they've been locked back in Juvi for the night for abusive behaviour.
    Greg
    21st May 2020
    5:04pm
    App doesn't work?? It has already located another person who was tested positive and are now isolating. They had no idea they had it and were happily walking around the community.

    What information are you worried about being stored? The contacts that the app "sees" are on your phone, after 21 days they are deleted, doesn't go anywhere unless you are at some point in time tested positive, you are asked at that time to upload the contact details of people that your phone has recorded. These details are the name, phone number, age range and postcode.

    Three of those details mentioned can be made up, the app actually states you can use a pseudonym for your name and you can, if you're paranoid make up age range and postcode. The only required item is your phone number so the health department can send an SMS stating that you should be tested as you were near a now positive case.

    Those details are hardly Earth shattering pieces of information. You do realise that My Gov has far more information on you, I'm sure you use a phone so triangulation can be used to find where you are located if need be, you may have social media accounts or even just using the internet while out with your phone, again more security issues.....if you're paranoid.
    gnome
    19th May 2020
    5:40pm
    I was going to post on this issue , but all I can say is keep up the good work Greg. You are articulating it better than I would. The Australian Government already knows more about you than CovidSafe or the My Gov app will give them. Wake up Australia the Government is not the Enemy Covid - 19 is.
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:36pm
    A friend of Greg's? So you are in this together? Too bad he gets a bit nasty with some of his commenting.
    Katie
    21st May 2020
    11:34am
    Yes, well said, Gnome. Greg is doing a fine job in trying - seemingly against all the odds! - to convince people of the purpose and benefits of this app. As you say, our govt is not the enemy. Covid-19 is.
    Viking
    21st May 2020
    11:49am
    Katie, Greg in his ignorant, abusive bombastic way is doing everything to dissuade people from adopting a system that is statistically and practically flawed. If when you buy you are persuaded by aggressive rude sales people then good on you. I am more likely to be persuaded by a plausible, well presented proposition, facts, statistical probability, and value. The app satisfies none of these and Greg only reinforces that view.
    Greg
    21st May 2020
    5:12pm
    Viking - "system that is statistically and practically flawed"

    Or maybe you just don't understand the system, which is obvious as it's not meant to be a 100% system. It's to AUTOMATE what happens currently in a labourious, inefficient, not thorough process

    I didn't say it's perfect, all I'm saying is it's not some radical app that the government is using to find out where we are or who we are with. As others have said the government is not the enemy, the virus is and the app is there to HELP with contact tracing going forward when restrictions are lessened even more and being able to keep everyone apart at all times will become harder and harder.
    Oxleigh
    19th May 2020
    5:46pm
    We have not heard if China has anything to do with the source code, Singapore is populated by a large number of Chinese a small number, whom cant be trusted. This is the same in Australia, as with all countries, have hackers and crims and spies internally and from other countries. Welcome to the world.
    My phone is only on Bluetooth when I am in the car for hands free.
    I have close contacts who work in the government and in the computer industry and we are waiting to look at the source code and will decide when this inspection is done if I will put it on my phone. Our government wont tell us if China has anything to do with it.
    With health as our priority we have the luxury of staying away from everyone who might be infected, unlike some who have to mix with the general population, We don't have to be near anyone for more than a few seconds in our rare public appearances.
    So for now I forget the app. WHEN the govt makes it compulsory for shopping and restaurants to check if I have it I will use and old phone and turn it off and on as needed.
    I treat anyone older than me as if I have it, anyone younger than me as if they have it.
    Hoohoo
    23rd May 2020
    6:16pm
    Thanks, Oxleigh, for this information. You seem to understand the risks. I personally don't think the government is trying to betray us, but it's all those very suss corporations and global government agencies that will most certainly betray us if they can 'crack' or hack in.

    Is it true that Amazon is hosting the iCloud?

    And is information via the app metadata or not?
    Pass the Ductape
    19th May 2020
    5:49pm
    I haven't- nor will I ever download the app. Trust modern day governments in Australia to keep their word on anything? The lying bullshit artists did their dash with me a long time ago!
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:38pm
    I agree, those who trust our Governments 100% are the ones who are ignorant. We need to keep vigilant and question authorities always.
    Incognito
    19th May 2020
    6:40pm
    We have covered this topic before (yawn), so no more discussion needed, would not be surprised if the Government is still trying to find ways of convincing people to download their 'safe' app, and Greg (and other nasty people) I will not be back so do not attack any of my comments, have a nice day.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    3:10pm
    Read other's comments then after alighting from your high horse!
    Polly
    19th May 2020
    8:25pm
    There is a question as to security. It is possible the information could be accessed by Google.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    3:07pm
    Google and Apple already know all about you years ago!
    An ex cop told us over 10 years ago at an in-service that Facebook is owned by the CIA!
    Once you go digital like owning a mobile phone or computer, you are being surveillance!
    Hairy
    19th May 2020
    9:39pm
    Too many smart ass would be academic Opininionated fwits on this blog today .So everyone dont think like you act like you ,have opinions like you. Your Whats wrong with aus These days .calm the f down your acting like mob if bitches.
    Roy R
    19th May 2020
    10:26pm
    Typical of politicians AND public servants. They are so disconnected from the general community that they neither know OR care about the effects of their actions. Just because they get new 'phones when the latest models come out, they think that everyone either does the same thing or is not worth considering. Arroganr pr*cks.
    JoJozep
    20th May 2020
    11:37am
    Thanks Greg for calling me an idiot. One day when you can convince me you can build a hospital, or even a garden shed, I'll believe your tripe. I can do that and have built many hospitals, not to mention many other large scale projects.

    More to the point, you didn't explain or mention or answered my main questions of the system as asked above.

    I ask again, what use is it to me or anyone else, if the system is totally a statistical nightmare? For example, it doesn't record where I've been or where, if contact is made (which is doubtful), the location of that contact. So if results in a few weeks time show a cluster of 20 positive cases, how can you deduce where the breakout is located? Unless the location is revealed, the results are useless. Answer this question!, I dare you!

    Have you researched my Apple 5 SE phone?. I repeat, Bluetooth flattens my battery quick smart, so you don't think I know how my phone works after 6-7 years?.

    If I were to get as nasty as you I'd call you more than an idiot, I'd call you a right wing political dunce who wouldn't know shit from clay.
    MB100D
    21st May 2020
    2:32pm
    Well said, just about sums it up.
    Veritas
    20th May 2020
    11:57am
    Samantha Armitage commented on the government's covid tracing app during Sunrise today. She said restaurants and other venues due to open in NSW will require patrons to leave their name and phone number as the covid safe app is not working as it was should. I believe the app has yet to register one infectious contact.
    Viking
    20th May 2020
    1:32pm
    Veritas, I believe that because of the very narrow criteria ie 15 minutes at 1.5m very few infections wiill ever be detected by the app. One single second sneeze in your direction within around 3m may be enough to infect.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    3:03pm
    Already registered an infectious person!
    Viking
    21st May 2020
    7:46pm
    Mez, who and where? Where is the reference or link to this claim?
    Viking
    23rd May 2020
    8:31am
    Mez. No reply so no evidence so probably untrue. Where's the link to the government claim of this detection?
    Mary
    20th May 2020
    12:22pm
    Honestly Greg, it would be just my luck to sit near a boring know-it-all like you in a cafe.(proper distance away of course.) In fact it couldn't be far enough away for me.
    You must be the most boring individual on earth.
    Katie
    21st May 2020
    11:47am
    Guess what, Mary? I hate to tell you this but not all useful information is entertaining. Greg has done his best to pass on his knowledge to those of us who have little or none. I for one appreciate his efforts.
    JoJozep
    20th May 2020
    12:41pm
    To allay everyone's fears, the system is not supposed to reveal your location at the time Bluetooth contact is made. So if a person displays no symptoms, what should he/she do, go and get a test on a hunch? In that situation, shouldn't it be compulsory for everyone in Victoria be tested?, then we wouldn't need the app or depend on people to come forward even if they don't know if they have the virus.

    So I ask again, unless we test 26 million people or thereabouts in Australia, when a cluster is identified by physical testing, wouldn't we already know at that point who the people are that make up the cluster. How does your Iphone know you have it unless you download results to the phone telling the App you (your phone) tests positive? In other words, you are committing your name and address to whom?. Every testing station perhaps? How many of these are there? What security is in place? Are these people sworn to secrecy? Can they be sued for carelessly bandying information about? What safeguards are there?

    The point is once a group of people test positive, they (Health Authorities) already know your name and address. Let's say after you test positive to the virus you can recall where you have been over the past two weeks. If any of those people have not come forward because they didn't know you were positive a week ago and the system cannot and must not reveal your and their location, say on a bus or escalator at Coles, they wouldn't know they were also part of a cluster. Nor would you!

    In other words.

    The solution is: 1. The App must know your location and everyone else's location at all times or
    2. Every human living in Australia must be tested weekly for the virus (around 26-27 million humans)

    Option 2 is unachievable and extremely costly. So I say again, the only practical use for the App is to reveal to the Authorities the name, address, gender and time of the comings and goings at least for the past two weeks, 24 hours a day. Would you trust that information to people you don't know, and how many would be tempted to on-sell the information. You see, if a cluster is found, and the App identifies your phone was in the middle of it, how can they tell it's you (or your phone) if they don't know your name and address associated with that phone? In other words, they already know your name and address, no doubt revealed to them by the phone companies.

    1984 anyone? Oops, that's now outdated and improved upon in 2020.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    3:02pm
    You sound very paranoid!
    Better see your GP
    !
    Greg
    21st May 2020
    4:51pm
    I explained how it works, numerous times now and yet you still don't understand.

    You're talking about name and address - I'll say it again, you do not need to put in your name or address on the app.

    Again, there are four items they ask when setting up the app, name, phone number, age range and postcode.

    Name - this can be a pseudonym, put in Donald Duck, it DOES NOT MATTER what name is there, the key is your phone number so they can send an SMS. The app actually says it can be a pseudonym.

    Phone number - yes important and required to send SMS.

    Age range - From memory was a 10 or 20 year ranges like aged 20-29, 30-39. Again you could put in anything.

    Postcode - Again you could put in anything.

    That's it, no address.

    Like I said many times before - this app is for CONTRACT TRACING, that's it, location of infection is not important (and not known by the app), the only contact details known is two phones with the app were near each other for 15 mins or more. each phone keeps a record in encryptic code that they were near each other, after 21 days that code is deleted. It does not get sent anywhere, there could potentially be thousand of contacts on phones and they gradually get deleted as the 21 days comes along.

    The app is only AUTOMATING the current process that happens manually whenever a positive case turns up, instead of an interview asking about your whereabouts for the last 14 days they can use the contacts recorded on the phone and an SMS is sent to each of those contacts saying they should get tested as they were near a NOW positive case. Currently the health department tries to contact all the places you went to and tries to contact the other people that were at those places - obviously not a very thorough system as knowing who those other people were that were on the train, bus or at the cafe would be near impossible. This app records those contacts and an SMS is sent out.

    When your phone detects another phone with the app the phone obviously does not know if the other person has the virus, it doesn't need to, it records the contact, that's it. Both phones have no indication that a contact was made, no sound, no message, nothing, it's just codes the contact and keeps it in memory until it's needed (if one person is tested positive) or deleted in 21 days.

    Also - the only time the coded information is uploaded anywhere is when/if you are tested positive, the positive person is asked to upload the coded information to the health department (contact details from the other phone, name, ph no, age range, postcode), the health department are the ones to send out an SMS to those contacts.
    Hoohoo
    25th May 2020
    2:14pm
    I sincerely don't think the government is trying to dupe or betray us, but it's all those very suss corporations and global government agencies that will (and already do) most certainly betray us if they can 'crack' or hack in.

    So please reply Greg, because I do want to believe you.

    Is it true that Amazon is hosting the iCloud?

    And is information via the app metadata or not?
    Ted Wards
    20th May 2020
    1:47pm
    Once you start going out to restaurants and cafes and back to community centres etc you have to fill out a form anyway that does the same thing or you can't enter.
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    2:58pm
    What rubbish!
    Mez
    21st May 2020
    2:51pm
    Have downloaded, uninstalled and downloaded again with absolutely no issues!
    Necessary to read the privacy policy as it indicates how to go through a two stage process to uninstall as it has an encryption to uninstall as well to complete it.
    No issues in using Bluetooth devices either concurrently but I do turn it off whilst alone at home to save battery use.
    I also have no concerns about any possibility of being surveillance because Google and Apple already have done that long ago via many means like Facebook which an ex cop told us at an in-service course over 10 years ago that the CIA owns Facebook!
    Mondo
    21st May 2020
    3:23pm
    That's great, what a pity it doesn't work!
    JoJozep
    21st May 2020
    3:47pm
    Hi Mez.

    Not too sure who or what you're actually criticizing, me or the App. I've only pointed out the benefits or lack thereof of an App which doesn't work in its present format. I congratulate you for downloading it and exposing yourself to government agencies, something I don't personally like and never will divulge.

    Remember, it's not the government itself that could be at fault but some unknown temporary "tracker".

    Why would you install, uninstall and reinstall the same App? to prove what? you can manage a computer? Just trust me that my earliest dealings with the first computers were Atari, Commodore and Tandy colour computers which in those days came with little software, so you had to do your own programs to make them work. The IBM personal computer (IBM PC 186) weren't invented then and it took 5-10 years before they came on the market.

    Just trust someone who has been associated with computers since 1978, and knows what they're capable of. Please explain where you're coming from.
    McDaddy
    21st May 2020
    4:12pm
    1 in 8 Australians believe that 5G Technology, caused or causes the spread of COVID-19. These people will never opt in to an app produced by the government.
    JoJozep
    21st May 2020
    6:09pm
    Thanks Greg for being civil this time and explaining the sort of detail I understand and would require in contract management. I will re asses the situation and reply tomorrow, time permitting
    JoJozep
    22nd May 2020
    12:33pm
    Got a little sleep, so I can reconsider my stance on downloading the App. Greg's explanation is spot on, describing how the system works. However, this has raised doubts in my mind how effective the system actually is.

    1. The press advertising gave me the impression the App would warn you when someone with the virus is around 1.5 m away. You say it does no such thing. Also the contact time has to be at least 15 minutes. If the virulent person moves to two metres away after 14 minutes, does the App cancel a possible link?

    2. You say you could enter your name as Yogi Bear and your address as 20 odd Highway to Heaven (or Hell) with a post code of 0000, or any other silly entry. Why then does the app ask these questions in the first place? I would have thought your name and address would be vital to track a possible cluster outbreak when you went back to your own suburb after exposure.

    3. Does that mean the Health Department already knows your name and address from your phone number? Or do they just send you a text message to your phone and demand you have a test. What am I supposed to think? I would have a week of fear wondering if I would test positive at a test and at my age perhaps be fatal? If i have no symptoms, do I disregard the SMS and wait? or do I still worry do the test and wait for test results? wouldn't that expose me to public transport and other unnecessary exposures?

    4. Does my SMS tell me who the infected person was? If not, who do I know that I would spend 15 minutes in close contact with. I would have to contact all my close relatives and embarrassingly ask them if anyone was positive.

    5. Where, (in my case at least) would I be 1.5m or less distant and for more than 15 minutes for my phone to register, except on a tram, bus train or taxi or some place at work. The App as you describe, doesn't differentiate. What's the point of switching off the App in these circumstances so as to not get false readings? Might as well not have it at all. Remember the last thing i want is a false SMS.

    6. What are the legal safeguards? I've yet to see any firm legislation of the Act and Regulations making the App private and confidential. I receive political garbage in the mail from Josh Frydenburg almost monthly, Why hasn't the federal or state Government sent me a letter asking my opinion of the matter and also set out the Act and Regulations. I'll I've seen so far on TV is political spiel telling us how good the App is, but none of its downsides regarding dissemination of private information.

    7. What if the App was hacked by criminals? what recourse is there to nail these scum (the real hidden bastards) legally and demand justice for loss and compensation. Who would you nail with a class action claim_ the Federal Government, the Health Department, the Minister of Health (hope its not the same "Greg") The Federal chief health officer ? Who?

    8. From the technical point of view, how many people, especially the older generation, understand all these complexities and even actually have a phone in the first place. My wife has an exact phone as mine. She is lucky if she could actually ring me without staff assistance, let alone down load the App. So she would have to divulge her personal details to a total stranger to download the App. We don't all live together under the one roof. At our age, Aged Care homes are common when one's health is involved.

    9. What happens if I don't charge my phone or forget it at Targets? After 21 days it removes the contact details and my SMS has gone to the "Cloud", so has all my personal details. Yet I didn't get the SMS at all. I'm not one who takes his phone to the toilet so as not to miss the latest message. I'd hate to think what I would do if it fell in the bowl!

    Please explain my concerns.
    Greg
    29th May 2020
    1:08pm
    1. No the app doesn't warn you when you are near a person with the virus - the person may not know they have the virus at that time, if they did they should be isolating anyway. Both phones when a contact is made give no indication to the people involved, no noise, no message, nothing, no one knows it happens.

    2. You keep mentioning address, no address is recorded anywhere, it's just not needed, the key is your phone number, that's what they use to phone you. Name doesn't matter, the app says you can use a pseudonym, I guess they like a name (first name) to when they call they can see "Is that Greg"). Obviously if you put in Yogi Bear and you get a call from the Health Department asking for Yogi Bear you'll know who they want.

    Age range is used to prioritise the calls to the people who need to be tested, depending on numbers involved the Health dept may find they need to call the older people first, remember the elderly are the more prone to death from the virus.

    Postcode is used to have an idea of where cases maybe, if they start seeing a number of cases crop up in postcode 1234 they may target that area with testing - just my guess. It's not very personal though, my town has 30,000 people with the same postcode.

    3. The Health Dept don't know your name/address (only that name you put into the app), they phone you and say get a test as you were near a recent positive case. Not sure what you mean by worried, "I would have a week of fear wondering if I would test positive at a test and at my age perhaps be fatal?" The other option is you keep walking around and have no idea you MAY be infected, giving it to others and spreading the problem further. If you get a call to have a test you would do it asap, and isolate yourself until you knew the results. Having symptoms is irrelevant, plenty have the virus with no symptoms at all, a prominent one being Richard Wilkins from Ch 9. He was tested because he'd been near Tom Hanks's wife, Wilkins tested positive, he made regular reports from home over three weeks with no symptoms at all, nothing, he had tests after two weeks and still positive, I think it was 3 tests and finally the 4th one was negative. The whole time no symptoms, felt totally fine.

    4.The Health Dept aren't going to tell you the positive case, may well be a stranger, I'm sure you would want YOUR name splashed around (remember privacy concerns). Of course it maybe a relative and obviously you would think where you have been recently and tell those relatives that they should get tested also now that you MAYBE a virus carrier.

    5. The idea of the app is to keep it on AT ALL TIMES you are away from home, train, bus, cafe, doctors office, church, whatever. False readings? Why, if you have been with that 1.5 metres for 15 mins at least it's a contact, you don't know/they don't know it's been recorded, you have no idea and after 21 days the data is deleted from your phone. In that time NO DATA is sent anywhere.

    6. There is legislation written, I've seen it, goes on about how any information is private, can't be shared with anyone except the Health Dept, fines/jail for offences, all the normal things. The government doesn't write to you about all the legislation they want to pass, that's why you elect them in the first place and that allows them to discuss the matter and pass the legislation or a referendum is called for the people to decide. The Federal Government website about the app full describes all details of the app and goes into details about privacy.

    7. If the app was hacked what do they get, a dodgy name, phone number, age range, postcode. If they got contact information about other people/phones they get a contact was made with phone dfgsdgf14ds11sdsdf1 (coded) at 10.50am on the 29th May. No names, no addresses, no location.
    All this talk about 'hackers" and apps/devices - it's media beat ups, it just doesn't happen, it takes very sophisticated equipment, lots of money, clever people and for what.....again a dodgy name, phone number, age range, postcode.
    The only "real" item out there is the phone number, sure you may want to keep it private but it's not the end of the world if someone gets it. Most scams use computer generated phone numbers where the computer dials numerous random numbers, they don't know if they are real or not, they just dial and try to get a hit. You hear people say, "How did they get my number", they didn't get it as such, they just guessed. Same thing happens with emails, scammers send out hundreds of thousand of emails with varying email names, most don't work and some get a hit.

    8. People with no phone or old phones don't use the app, simple. It's not mandatory, it's not a 100% fail safe tool.

    9. Like with any phone call I guess the Health Dept would keep trying, maybe they send an SMS to ask you to contact them, maybe they just don't get to contact you at all if the phone is not on for 3 weeks. If you didn't have a phone you wouldn't even be a contact - again the app is not 100% fail safe.
    "so has all my personal details" - no, nothing goes anywhere if you are not tested positive.

    Some of your questions suggest you still don't really understand what the app is for.

    I'll try again to explain - All the app is for is to ASSIST with contact tracing. Before the app was around when a person tested positive they were interviewed and asked about their moments for the last two weeks, things like rode the train to Sydney on 21st May, sat in doctors office on the 22nd May, had a coffee at ABC Cafe on the 25th May. The Health Dept would try to contact those places (doctors office, cafe) and tell them they had someone there who has the virus, those places in turn would tell the Heath Dept who was there at the same time (doctors would keep a record, some cafes are keeping records) and the Heath Dept tries to contact those people to say they should get a test as they may have been infected. Now I'm sure you can imagine that this is not a thorough way of determining where someone has been, they could easily forget they had that cafe for example and trying to contact those people at the cafe would be difficult too. The cafe may need to place a sign up but those people who were there may not read it, it's a very messy way to trace contacts thoroughly and very time consuming.

    The app automates this process, the more people with the app the better. Imagine if everyone had the app, all those contacts for the predetermined time/distance would be recorded and as soon as someone tests positive the Heath Dept knows the phone numbers of people to call. Again this app ASSISTS with contact tracing, they will still be doing interviews, maybe they will change how they do the interviews, I don't know.

    Keep in mind it's not 100%, just like the current system of interviews isn't 100%, the app is just another, further tool to use to assist with this contact tracing. I know you may say, "Why 15 mins, it could spread in 5 mins or walking past someone while they cough". Sure that can happen but the current interview system doesn't get those contacts either, if someone coughed maybe you would remember but not much help - "I remember a woman walked past me outside Westpac bank on 25th May who coughed", well how do you contact that person through the interview?

    Remember it's just another tool to help, it would work better the more people that have it, and that's why the government was so insistent on everyone getting it. The data is nominal, the information extremely basic, doesn't identify you, there's plenty of other apps/programs out there that get far more information from you.
    Tarlo
    22nd May 2020
    5:01pm
    Since I retired I never carry a phone. (I needed to at work) Now I never do, except when on holidays, whenever that might be next??? My wife does carry a phone, but can never find it in her handbag. So no point us having the app.
    Euripides
    23rd May 2020
    12:21pm
    Now retired, I successfully undertook a computer science degree in my 50, I have checked the CovidSafe app and although suspicious of many apps, am completely satisfied with it. To enable detection of attacks on the central database and the resultant SPAM, I have used a variation of my name, not used elsewhere, when registering. COVIDSAFE is good.


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