COVID Alert app
Use the COVID Alert app to protect yourself, people around you and the public.
The COVID Alert app:
- notifies you if you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19;
- refers you to the relevant information concerning the steps to follow after you receive the exposure notification;
- informs other app users when they have been close to a person who has reported testing positive to COVID-19 through the app, anonymously and without sharing personal information.
The COVID Alert app does not:
- access, collect or archive your personal information or information on your health status;
- use the GPS on your device and cannot determine your location or any other personal information.
Use of the COVID Alert app is entirely voluntary. You are free to download the app, use it or remove it.
It is prohibited for anyone to require any person to install or use the COVID Alert app or to reveal the information contained in it. It is also prohibited for anyone to advantage or disadvantage any person for not installing this app, for not using it or for refusing to reveal the information contained in it.
If you experience a situation of being obliged to use the application or to reveal the information contained in it, you may file a complaint at the Commission d’accès à l’information: email@example.com.
Download the COVID Alert app:
The more people use the app, the more effective it will be in curbing transmission.
The COVID Alert app runs in the background on your device without hampering or interrupting your day-to-day activities.
- The app uses Bluetooth on smartphones to determine how far away you are from other people using the app.
- It exchanges random codes every five minutes with app users nearby. The random codes cannot be used to identify you or to determine your location.
- The app stores the codes on your telephone for 14 days.
Every day, when your device connects to the Internet, the COVID Alert app will match your random codes and those of individuals who have indicated through the app that they have tested positive.
Even if the app finds matches, it is impossible to link them to individuals. Your identity remains confidential.
If the app finds matching codes, this means that within the past several days, you have been less than 2 metres away for more than 15 minutes from an app user who has in the meantime tested positive. You will, therefore, receive an exposure notification.
- The notification will indicate that you have potentially been in contact with COVID-19.
- It will indicate the steps to follow.
No personal information or location data is shared. It is, therefore, impossible to know when and where you were in contact with an infected individual.
If you have tested positive and public health authorities have contacted you, you can request a one-time key. Informing other users that you have received a positive result is entirely voluntary. It is your decision to request a one-time key and to share your diagnosis.
To do so:
- promptly call the telephone number indicated in the app;
- make note of the key that you receive once your identity and test result have been verified;
- enter the key in the app within 24 hours, after which it will expire.
Please note that only persons who have received a call from public health concerning a positive diagnosis on the COVID-19 screening test may be given a one-time code. A verification will be done by a staff member and you will be asked for identification information.
If you are not fully satisfied with the services provided when you request a one-time key, you may communicate with the official responsible for complaints at the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Your complaint will be handled with full confidentiality.
Even if you choose to communicate your positive result, COVID Alert will not share any information that can identify you. You are in charge of making your own decisions. It is up to you to decide if you wish to share this diagnosis. Your anonymity will always be maintained.
Privacy and data protection
The app does not monitor your location.
The COVID Alert app does not use your smartphone’s GPS and will never request authorization to reveal your location.
The app does not collect your personal information.
It does not obtain your name, telephone number or any other personal details.
No health-related information is collected.
Even if you decide to report your positive result to other people, COVID Alert will not share any information that might identify you.
You are fully in charge of your decisions.
If you test positive, it is up to you whether you wish to share the diagnosis with other people. Your anonymity will always be maintained. You can consult the unabridged version of the confidentiality policy .
How to temporarily deactivate your app
It is possible that you may need to temporarily deactivate the app on your phone. This is the case, for example, if you know that you will be in contact with persons infected with COVID-19, particularly if you work in a hospital environment. This is how to deactivate the app:
On an Android-type telephone:
- Go to your phone settings;
- Select Google;
- The option “COVID-19 exposure notifications” will appear at the top of the list; select it;
- Deactivate notifications.
On an Apple phone:
- Go to settings;
- The option “COVID Alert” will appear in your list; select it;
- Select “notifications;”
- Deactivate notifications.
You can obtain additional information on the COVID Alert app from the Government of Canada.
Read the COVID Alert Privacy Notice (Exposure Notification) for additional information.
Last update: June 4, 2021