COVID-19: Québec consults the population on the deployment of an application tracing

COVID-19: Québec consulte la population sur le déploiement d’une application de traçage

The government of Quebec wants to hear the opinions of the population on the possible deployment of an application tracing cases of COVID-19 in preparation for a second wave of contamination.

The minister delegated to the digital Transformation of government, Éric Caire, announced Wednesday the immediate initiation of an online consultation that runs until 2 August.

“It is expected that there will be a second wave and we are to prepare ourselves for this second wave. In this context, all options to combat a resurgence of this pandemic should be part of the reflection,” he said.

Eric Cairo, however, has not wanted to encrypt the response rate that would justify, in the eyes of the government of Quebec, the deployment of such an application. It would allow Quebec subscribers to be informed by their phone if they are found near a person with the COVID-19.

This consultation must allow, above all, to know the membership rate of the population in such a project, he argued.

“It can be a tool that is useful if, and only if, the people the download. If people don’t download, it’s useless”, added the minister, Cairo.

In France, only 2 % of the population have downloaded the app-tracing implementation, which makes it not very useful, has he given in the example.

Anyway, the application that would make Quebec would not use the geo-location, no stores no data and does not use of biometric parameters, or the characteristics which enable an individual to be identified, insisted the minister.

Given the tight timelines for the implementation of an application by the next fall, the government would opt for a technology that is already existing.

Otherwise, developed an application “made in Quebec” would take between 18 to 24 months, without counting the time required by government authorities to test its reliability and safety, explained Éric Caire.

To participate in the consultation launched by the government, you can go to consultation.quebec.ca.

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