In addition to a more transparent process, there are quite a few other changes to the new Smittestopp app. The new app...
- stores the data locally on your phone
- uses only Bluetooth for tracing, not GPS and satellites. In other words, it doesn’t store where you’ve visited
- uses less battery
- is only used for contact tracing, not analysis or research
- doesn’t collect data that can be used to identify you
- doesn’t notify others automatically, you have to do it yourself
Source: helsenorge.no (in Norwegian)
Works like a raffle ticket
The new version of Smittestopp uses the Exposure Notification Service developed by Google and Apple. Bluetooth technology registers when you’re close to another user.
Smittestopp doesn’t store any personal info, it actually works a little like a raffle ticket. When you meet someone, let’s call them “Charlie”, you receive a part of their raffle ticket - and vice versa. Smittestopp will then remember that you were in close contact with each other.
If and when Charlie tests positive for Covid-19, a token goes out from their doctor/laboratory and to Smittestopp confirming that they tested positive. Then, Charlie can update their status in Smittestopp and you’ll be notified.
“However, you won’t be notified of who it was or when. Just that someone you’ve had close contact with has tested positive. There’s been a lot of work on privacy every step of the way, making it very difficult to track people,” Harald says.
“Charlie” also won’t be able to let Smittestopp know they tested positive without a token from health care providers confirming their status.
Continuing with transparency
Sindre explains that they’re very happy with the process, and especially lucky to have so many people working pro-bono as part of the panel.
“Personally, I hope we can continue this way of working with an expert panel, especially with solutions that affect the general public, combined with an process that’s as open as possible,” Sindre says.
Downloading and installing the app is voluntary, but its effect is greatly increased by the number of people who use it.
“I’m really glad that Equinor IT have been able to assist FHI and their expert panel through one of our employees. We have talented developers and tech specialists working for us, and I’m proud to see that they are taking part in processes like this.”
Magrete Torland, sector manager Software Innovation
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