Ottawa's COVID Alert tracking app goes live in Quebec
MONTREAL -- The Canadian government's COVID-19 tracking app is now live in Quebec.
On Monday, Premier Francois Legault announced the launch of the app within the province. Speaking to media, Legault demonstrated the app by himself registering and downloading COVID Alert onto his phone.
“If I can do it, everybody can do it,” he said.
The app works by having people who test positive for COVID-19 enter a unique code. Phones with the app installed exchange random codes with nearby phones via Bluetooth and check a list of random codes from people who tested positive. Anyone who comes near a positive code is notified and encouraged to get tested.
COVID Alert is also available in Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfound and Labrador, Ontario and Saskatchewan.
Legault said the app is meant to supplement contact tracing efforts made by public health officials.
He also addressed privacy concerns over the app, promising Quebecers that their information will remain confidential.
“Public health, the government, your contacts, no one will know where you are or who you are going to meet,” he said.
The premier stressed the importance of having as many Quebecers as possible download the app and called on television presence Julie Snyder and pop star Marie-Mai to themselves register and ask their fans to do the same.
“To be efficient, we need as many people as possible to register. In Quebec, we are six million people with a smartphone, so I'm asking, right now, all those who are listening to go register right away,” he said. “That way, we will create a chain of solidarity and the greater the number of people registered, the more successful we will be and the faster we can go back to a normal way of life.”
Political analyst Tom Mulcair explains why he is downloading the app. Listen to the interview here: