In an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus, both Apple and Google worked on a COVID-19 contact tracing tool for smartphones.
COVID-19 Exposure Logging, the contact tracing tool, will alert and notify users that they may have been exposed to someone who is infected with COVID-19. The tech giants announced the collaboration in early April and Apple rolled out the tool mid-May at the same time it launched iOS 13.5.
For iPhone users, you can find the tool on settings – privacy – health. COVID-19 Exposure Logging is automatically turned off.
According to a statement by Apple, to enable the tool, users must have an authorized app provided by respective local or federal health authorities. “When enabled, iPhone can exchange random IDs with other devices using Bluetooth. The random IDs your device collects are stored in an exposure log for 14 days.”
In a situation where you are diagnosed with COVID-19, you have the option to share your device’s random ID with the authorized app in which your status is shown so it can notify other users anonymously.
Regarding privacy concerns, Google and Apple ensure consumers’ privacy as a top priority. The system does not collect users’ location data nor shares users’ identities with each other. Users will have control to share all data they want to share and the decision to share it.