TUCSON, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - The new app called COVID Watch is the first of its kind here in the United States. It aims at alerting people exposed to COVID-19. According to the founder, Christina White, it is the first fully anonymous notification app being tested in the country.
"So we don't have to actually collect any information about anyone like phone or contact information. In the whole system, no one knows who you are," said White.
The technology shares signals between app users. If someone tests positive, they can update the app, which will then privately notify all other users who have been in contact with them.
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"At that point, you are fully anonymous. You are the only person who knows you have been exposed," said White.
It is similar to contact tracing and can help slow the spread of the virus. The University of Arizona is currently testing the app and plans to launch the campus-wide pilot on Aug. 10. White said if all goes well, we could see the app across the state in the future.
"It is like this beautiful example of a lot of people coming together and trying to build something that will help their community," said White.