Japan's coronavirus contact-tracing app launched amid privacy concerns - (The Japan Times via NewsPoints Desk)

  • Japan's government launched on Friday a free smartphone application that alerts users when they may have been in close proximity to someone infected with COVID-19, as reported The Japan Times.

  • The app, which uses Bluetooth wireless technology, "does not collect personal data at all. People can use it without worry," said Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

  • According to the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry, which is operating the programme, information on time and place of contact, and user's identities, cannot be known by the government and other app users.

  • Experts on data usage and privacy have suggested that for the app to be commonly used, a system involving third-party monitoring is required to ensure data will not be used for other purposes.

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