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Province launching new contact-tracing app

The province is testing a new app to make it easier to track whether Albertans could have been exposed to COVID-19. Using Bluetooth, ABTraceTogether allows opt-in users to find out if they’ve been in contact with someone who has been exposed to COVID-19.

Contact tracing is the identification and follow-up of people who may have come into contact with a person infected with a contagious disease. The province views it as a tool that can be combined with other methods to keep people safer, open up the economy sooner, and move closer to a greater sense of normalcy.

If an infected person has the app, they would be asked to voluntarily upload encrypted data to Alberta Health Services Contact Tracers. The tracers will then be able to use that information, and share with other app users who have had close contact.

To deal with concerns surrounding privacy, the government says there is limited disclosure of information for app users, including identifiable information exchanged between phones. Officials add information is collected by AHS only when a user tests positive and voluntarily uploads their contact log.

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