Scotland’s coronavirus contact tracing app told more than 5,000 people to self-isolate in the first month after it was launched.
Protect Scotland uses Bluetooth technology to alert users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.
Almost 1.5 million people in Scotland have downloaded the app since its September 10 launch. And Colm Harte, technical director at app developers NearForm, said 40% of positive cases had the app on their phone, resulting in 5,449 close contacts receiving an alert.
Mr Harte also reassured users the app has a “privacy first approach” amid fears of data scraping by Google.
An Android phone must have Google Play Services running for the tracing app to work. But researchers in Ireland, where a similar app is used, said the way Google Play Services sent personal data to Google was “extremely troubling”.
Google has insisted it does not receive information about the end user, location data or information about other devices the user has been near.
Mr Harte added that independent experts at non-profit tech consortium Linux had not raised privacy concerns.
The total number of close contacts of positive cases traced in Scotland in the last four weeks is 47,183, official figures show. And modelling done by Professor Christophe Fraser of the University of Oxford found the app could help control the virus, even at low level of uptake.
The Scottish Government said: “Close to 1.5 million people have now downloaded the app, representing more than a third of all people over the age of 16 in Scotland, and well over the level which the Oxford University modelling shows the app will start to have an effect”
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