How the COVID Alert app works
Three smartphones appear on screen.
Our smart phones: we use them to keep in touch…to play…and to work.
Text message bubbles appear in the first screen, game icons in the second and a video chat symbol in the third.
Now, your smart phone can help you limit the spread of COVID-19.
A hand holding another smartphone appears. The icon of the COVID Alert app is visible on the smartphone’s screen. The icon is represented by a white maple leaf inside a red octagon surrounded by small grey triangles.
Someone can have COVID-19 and not know it. They can spread the disease before they have any symptoms.
We see a woman in a park setting holding a phone. She has virus icons floating beside her head indicating an infection.
The Government of Canada has developed an app that will let you know if you may have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
A second person holding a smartphone appears on screen, next to the woman. Both phones indicate a connection has been made between them.
The COVID Alert app creates a random code, so that no one will know your name, or your location.
The app uses Bluetooth to exchange random codes with nearby phones. The code is a randomly generated string of digits and letters that changes every 5 minutes, so it cannot be used to identify you.
The two smartphones take prominence on screen while Bluetooth icons flash above them. A random code made of several numbers and letters appears from one phone and is transferred to the other.
The app does not have access to your name or address, or your phone’s contacts, your location, or your health information.
The words “Name”, “Address”, “Contacts”, “Location” and “Health Information” appears on screen and are then crossed out by a large red X.
If someone you've encountered later tests positive for COVID-19 and uploads to the app a one-time key they received from their healthcare authority, you'll be notified that you may have been exposed.
The smartphone’s screen changes to reveal a screen shot of the COVID Alert app. A purple octagon with a hand indicating a stop signal is visible along with the sentence “You’ve been exposed in the last 14 days”. A hand pushes a button that reads “Find out what to do next”.
If you test positive for COVID-19, you can upload your one-time key from your healthcare authority. The app will then notify the people you've encountered, without revealing your identity.
The screen changes to another that reads “Let people know they may have been exposed”. Next, a finger enters a random number in a designated field.
You can then take steps to limit the spread of the disease. If you know you’ve been exposed, you should contact your local public health authority and follow their instructions.
After seeing the woman again, her smartphone screen reads “Together, let’s stop the spread of COVID-19”.
Using the app is one more thing we can all do to help limit the spread of COVID-19, in addition to washing our hands, keeping 2 metres apart, and wearing a non-medical mask or face covering when it’s difficult to maintain physical distancing.
Two hands are being washed. A 2-metre distance indicator appears above the two people, and a mask appears on their faces.
You can do your part by downloading the app today, and helping others use it too.
The more people who use the app, the better we can contain COVID-19.
A group of smartphones with the app installed are gathered together to reveal the COVID Alert app icon.
Help protect yourself and your community.
Download the COVID Alert app to help limit the spread of COVID-19.
Text on screen: iOS and Android
Find out more at Canada.ca/coronavirus
URL appearing on screen: Canada.ca/coronavirus
A message from the Government of Canada.
- COVID Alert: Canada’s COVID-19 exposure notification app (infographic)
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