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Mon 15 Jun 2020 02:39 PM

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Saudi Arabia launches new Covid-19 tracing app

The app notifies people of other users who have been confirmed to have contracted Covid-19 over the previous 14 days

Saudi Arabia launches new Covid-19 tracing app

Saudi Arabia has launched a new mobile application that allows residents identify nearby Covid-19 cases and protect themselves against infection, authorities have announced.

The Tabaud app, which was designed by the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence, notifies people in heavily populated areas of others who have contracted Covid-19 over the course of a 14-day period.

“Users can share their information and then contact those he or she came into contact with,” ministry spokesman Dr. Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly was quoted as saying by Arab News.

“The people who came into contact with the infected person will receive an anonymous notification that will ask them to get an early detection exam.”

According to media reports, the app uses Bluetooth and encryption technology to detect other phones that are equipped with the app, determine their distance, and notify users of potentially dangerous encounters.

In his remarks, Al-Aly also warned that the rate of infection in Saudi Arabia could potentially increase “if society doesn’t adhere to instructions, especially if they’re surrounded by people.”

“It’s in our hands. We can be responsible and return to our lives with caution by picking up health-conscious behaviours and the rate will go down again and reach the desired outcome,” he said.

To date, there have been more than 127,500 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the country, including 972 deaths and 84,720 fatalities.

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