Photo Caption: Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton is urging people in his electorate to download the Australian Government’s COVID-19 mobile app which launched yesterday.
Federal Member for Parkes and Minister for Regional Communications Mark Coulton is urging people in his electorate to download the Australian Government’s COVID-19 mobile application which launched yesterday.
Mr Coulton said the voluntary app, ‘COVIDSafe’, is an important public health initiative which will keep families and communities safe from further spread of coronavirus.
“If we want to get ahead of this virus, we need to get on board with downloading this app to protect ourselves and those we love,” Mr Coulton said.
“It is a simple and straightforward process – I downloaded the app yesterday and I encourage everybody else to do the same.
“COVIDSafe will speed up the process of identifying people who have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with coronavirus, quickly stopping further spread of the virus in the community.
“We are doing very well in the Parkes electorate as we fight against the spread of this virus, and it’s a credit to our efforts adhering to the measures in place to keep us safe – but it’s not over yet.
“Advice from the Chief Medical Officer is that we need the COVIDSafe app as part of the plan to save lives.”
Mr Coulton said users of the app can be reassured that their information will be used appropriately.
“Information provided voluntarily through the app will only be accessible for use by authorised state and territory health officials,” he said.
“Unless and until a person is diagnosed with COVID-19, no contact information collected in the app is disclosed or able to be accessed. Once the person agrees and uploads the data, only the relevant state or territory public health officials will have access to the information.”
The app can be downloaded from app stores.
- To be effective, users should have the app running in the background when they are coming into contact with others. It then securely makes a “digital handshake”, which notes the date and time, distance and duration of the contact.
- The app does not use geolocation.
- The only information health officials are allowed to access is that of close contacts – when a person has come within approximately 1.5 metres of another app user for 15 minutes or more – in their jurisdiction.
- All information collected by the app is securely encrypted and stored in the app on the user’s phone.