In order to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ICT Division, Government of Bangladesh, has released a smartphone app (beta) for the citizens of the country, said a statement.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak, the State Minister, ICT Division formally unveiled the "Corona Tracer BD" app on Thursday through an online video press conference.
The app utilizes Bluetooth and the latest technology to notify 'At-Risk' users by detecting the exposure with a COVID-19 positive user. The data collected is kept secure in-transit via encryption. When the two users come within a certain distance of each other, the users' phones will exchange "Digital Handshakes". The "Corona Tracer BD" app can be downloaded from the Play Store by clicking this link: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.shohoz.tracer
The press conference was presided over by N M Zeaul Alam, Senior Secretary, Ministry of ICT. Anir Chowdhury, Policy Adviser, a2i; Dr Abul Kalam Azad, Director General, DGHS; Dr Meerjady Sabrina Flora, Director, IEDCR; Dr Abdul Mannan, Program Director, a2i; Sami Ahmed, IT-ITES Policy Advisor shared their statements during the press conference. Senior officials of the ICT Division, journalists, and members of the press were also present at the event.
In his speech as the Chief Guest, State Minister, ICT Division, Zunaid Ahmed Palak said that the government is undertaking a number of tech-focused initiatives to tackle various challenges and build our desired Digital Bangladesh as per the dream of the Hon'ble Prime Minister. The "Corona Tracer BD" app is one such initiative which will play a key role in securing the lives and livelihoods of the people of this country at a time of great need.
He added the government has already applied technology-based solutions to keep the sectors such as agriculture, education, healthcare and emergency food supplies operational. This app can function as an important part of the solution against the COVID-19 pandemic. He urged the people of Bangladesh to come forward against the rise of COVID-19 by using this app.
Senior Secretary, N M Zeaul Alam said that, from its inception, the ICT Division has always made the best utilisation of technology to tackle various issues by partnering up with private-sector organisations in its journey of bringing the dream of "Digital Bangladesh" to reality. "Corona Tracer BD" is the finest example of such a public-private partnership.
Founding Managing Director of Shohoz, Maliha Quadir, has said that if any user comes into the vicinity of a COVID-19 positive user, within a certain time and distance threshold, the user is automatically made aware of the potential risk and what they should do if exposed.