Like many other countries, the UK is keen to ease restrictions following coronavirus, so that people can enjoy spending time with friends and family and get back to work to re-build the economy. One resolution to make this happen is the new contact tracing app.
Installed on the smartphone, the app aims to track individuals should they have been in contact with others who have the virus, in an effort to contain and prevent further spreading. When two app users come together, Bluetooth signals transmit an anonymous ID to create a low energy digital connection between the two people’s smartphones.
If the user later reports a positive testing of the coronavirus, the app will ping a message to all those that it has been in contact with, within the last 28 days. The app will recommend that those people self-isolate or until they too can take a test and receive the results.
Data will be shared with through the health service data for 28 days, but the users ID will be kept anonymous.
For this new type of system to work as effectively as possible, the CEO of BLOK Bioscience believes that running the NHS COVID-19 app on a blockchain based network is the security solution in terms of data privacy.
“Distributed ledger technology, or blockchain, is a key enabler for this solution in a number of areas, be it validating the self-sovereign data on a user’s phone, making it much harder to hack or providing traceable, auditable, immutable, and anonymised record of test results and observations.” Says Blok’s CEO Alex Tai, in a recent article by Busineesscloud.co.uk
He also raised a question over those that don’t have a smartphone are often the elderly who are in the high-risk group but are also the most vulnerable. Clarifying that there will need to be a solution which can support all individuals in all group categories is key to how contact tracing will be managed in the future.
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