Taiwan recommends contact tracing app for restaurants, markets and concerts | Taiwan News

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Tuesday (April 12) released a list of suggested locations where the country’s contact tracing app can be used under the “New Taiwan Model.” .


At a press conference, the CECC announced that the country’s epidemic prevention efforts are focusing on “Taiwan’s new model” to achieve its goals of “normal life, active epidemic prevention and regular opening “. In order to strengthen proactive epidemic prevention, improve the efficiency of epidemiological investigations and identify possible high-risk cases, the center has optimized the functionality of Taiwan’s social distancing app (臺灣社交距離) .


The app was created by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Taiwan AI Labs. It uses Bluetooth technology to detect if a user has come within 2 meters of a confirmed case of COVID-19 for more than two minutes in the past 14 days.


CECC IT team leader Chien Hung-wei (簡宏偉) said the app would only be effective if it was widely used by the public. Staff from ministries and critical infrastructure providers will be particularly encouraged to use it.


The CECC recommends the app for people who frequent restaurants or markets or participate in activities like concerts or pilgrimages. Chien said it could serve as both a digital tool for epidemic prevention and a way to trace contacts faster and more accurately.


Chien said the app will be paired with the real-name text messaging system. When entering a venue, users simply bring up the app screen, eliminating the need to manually check in with the real-name check-in system.


To use the app, just download and install it. No registration or login information is required, Chien said.


In order to improve the usefulness of the app, the CECC has optimized its functions, including the “dynamic welcome screen” and a section for confirmed cases to upload contact information. After the health department asks a confirmed case to open the app for a verification code, the system uploads an anonymous ID and information about areas where the case was recently active.


The app generates an anonymous ID every 15 minutes and uses a Bluetooth signal to log anonymous IDs a user has come into contact with. The application updates these identifiers daily.


Chien reminded the public to turn on the Bluetooth function to enable the functions of the application. If a user is notified that they have come into contact with a confirmed case, the app will issue a warning notification with instructions.


Those who haven’t downloaded the app yet can find it under “Taiwan Social Distancing” on the Android and iOS app stores.