The New York State has partnered with Google and Apple to launch a Covid alert app which works as an exposure notification app.
The app called COVID Alert NY aims at stopping the spread of COVID-19 through exposure alert notifications, without compromising privacy or personal information.
According to the statement released by the Governor of New York State, COVID Alert NY is a free smartphone app available to anyone 18+ who lives and/or works in New York.
In the statement released on Thursday October 1, 2020, Governor Cuomo said, “The app uses Bluetooth technology to quickly alert users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.”
“Once alerted, users can quickly protect themselves and others by self-quarantining, contacting their physician and getting tested.” the statement adds
The Governor explained that the app protects users privacy because data is kept anonymous and is not identifiable to any individual.
“The State Department of Health cannot identify who downloads the app, and does not collect your name, phone number or other personal information. Any data you voluntarily choose to share is anonymous and can be deleted at any time,” he said
He further stated that “As you go about your day, the app uses Bluetooth to sense when another person with the same app comes within 6 feet of you. Your phone exchanges a secure random code with the other phone to record your proximity.”
“If the app notes that you’ve been within 6 feet of someone for more than 10 minutes, the app adds their phone’s random code to a list of close contacts,” he added.
The Governor thus urged New Yorkers to download and use the COVID Alert NY app, a it will be more effective as a tool to stop the spread of COVID-19.
“Download the app today and encourage your friends and loved ones to download it, too. Alerts can only come from other people who use the app, so we need as many New Yorkers as possible to download the app,” he said.