France may get controversial StopCovid app this week

Woman uses a smartphone. The controversial StopCovid app could be available to download this weekend subject to a final debate and vote.
The controversial StopCovid app could be available to download this weekend, subject to a final debate and vote

StopCovid, the coronavirus smartphone “tracing app”, could be available in France from this weekend, if it is approved in parliament this week, the government has said, amid ongoing criticism and concerns.

In an interview with newspaper Le Figaro, junior minister for digital affairs, Cédric O, said that the new app would be released subject to approval by the Assemblée Nationale.

He said: “Subject to the vote in Parliament, the app could be available in Apple and Android app stores from this weekend.”

A final debate and vote on the issue are scheduled to take place in the Assemblée Nationale, and in the Senate, this Thursday (May 28).

The app is intended to help affected users understand how their movements could infect others, and to alert those they have been in contact with over the previous two weeks, so that they too can take precautions to avoid spreading coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19.

The government agreed to hold a debate and vote in light of the controversy surrounding the app. Yet, a vote was not legally required, as use of the app will be strictly voluntary.

The app is anonymous, and - beyond downloading it to your phone - does not require you to input any personal details. It simply asks you to turn on Bluetooth, and accept notifications.

Then, when it registers that users (all of ...

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