Apple and Google release APIs for COVID-19: ready for IMMUNI
Apple and Google, we remind you, they did not work to create their own contagion tracking applications from Coronavirus but instead allowed their operating systems, Android and iOS, to be able to work in a complete and new way on the notifications and on the system that uses Bluetooth for tracking through app developed by third parties. They are called API in jargon and are therefore the bases that will now allow the system to be applied ” contact tracing ” in all countries that want it through applications. The system will be used by at least 22 countries, these numbers have reached Google and Apple at the moment, and in these there also the Italy we have seen has formalized its application immune which should, according to government sources, arrive by the end of the month on all smartphones for those who want it, since installation will not be mandatory.
The joint note from Apple and Google: “We have collaborated to build contagion exposure notification technology that will allow health authority apps to work more accurately, reliably and effectively on both Android and iPhone phones. In the past few weeks, our two companies have worked together with authorities health professionals, scientists, privacy organizations and leaders of governments around the world to collect contributions and indications. The notification of exposure has as its specific objective the early warning, particularly important to slow down the spread of the disease since the virus can spread asymptomatically. “
Too bad to find out during the passage of the official publication of the new API of Google and Apple that currently there should be no interoperability between applications from different countries. This is because at the moment the applications have been developed in a ” national ” way and therefore for tracing within the borders of the state of the application. There will therefore be no communication between the Italian and German applications unlike some American applications that have decided on a more regional approach and therefore with communication between them to further increase the degree of user tracking.
It would have been an important point this especially now that summer is advancing and that, if the infections remain stable and with low numbers, you can go on vacation as far as possible. In this case, if a positive foreign tourist spends his holidays in Italy, the Immuni application will not be able to receive any type of signal from the tourist’s foreign application and therefore will not be able to trace the infection. On this, the games are not completely closed as it seems possible in the future to update the applications that will also allow compatibility with other international apps. And we hope so.
Immune app: how will it work and when will it arrive?
Immuni’s documentation been released on theGithub, that is, the hosting service for software projects, which allowed a few weeks ago to observe the graphics of the Italian application for the first time but above all to discover its operation. There was still no source code since the application is still under development but it is clear that its operation can be easily understood from the documentation.
The fundamental step, and that had worried everyone, that the application will not work via GPS but via Bluetooth for the tracking of infections. This means that in this way users who will use it will never share any kind of personal datawhich will instead be replaced by completely anonymous ID codes that will never be associated with names of persons or even with telephone numbers or other data attributable to the natural person who uses the app.
Immuni will work for both iOS and Android smartphonesand will allow users at risk of “transporting” the virus to be informed as quickly as possible, even when they are asymptomatic. These users will then be able to isolate themselves to avoid infecting others and consult a doctor. According to the documentation, Immuni’s design and development is based on five main principles: usefulness, accuracy, scalability, transparency and privacy.
The entire contact tracking system based on Bluetooth Low Energy.What does this mean?When two users approach each other sufficiently for a certain period, their devices mutually register the so-called “ identifier ” for mobile proximity in the local memory of the device. These “identifiers” are generated by temporary exposure keys and change several times an hour and are generatedcasually. When a user is positive for SARS-CoV-2, he has the possibility to upload his recent temporary exposure keys to a server but this can only be done with the validation of a healthcare professional. The app periodically downloads the new temporary exposure keys and uses them to obtain the rotation proximity identifiers of the infected users. Then it compares them with those stored in the device memory and warns the user if a risky contact has occurred.
By not using GPS location data, the app clearly cannot tell where contact with a potentially contagious user occurred, nor the identities of the people involved. As mentioned to implement its contact tracking functionality, Immuni takes advantage of the exposure notification framework from Apple and Google. Finally, in addition to the temporary exposure keys, the Immuni app also sends some analysis data to the server which include epidemiological and technical information that are sent in order to help the National Health Service to provide effective assistance to users, in compliance with the ‘art. 6.2.b and 6.3 of Law Decree 28/2020.
HERE you can find all the information about the IMMUNI application.
The app will arrive by the end of the month and allow you to have greater control of the infections from Coronavirus. It is clear that the massive use of the application will allow to have a real and useful result, therefore it is recommended to use it precisely to allow the health authorities of the country to prepare the emergency in case of an increase in the numbers of infection.