New Delhi: The Indian Army has asked its personnel to use the Covid-19 contact-tracing app Aarogya Setu with caution while following all cyber security precautions.
While urging download of the Aarogya Setu app, it advised personnel to avoid it in office premises, operational areas and sensitive locations. Personnel, veterans and families have been asked to cyber security precautions.
Aarogya Setu is a mobile app developed by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology to help citizens identify their risk of contracting Covid-19.
“Existing cyber security policies on usage of mobile phones must be adhered to by army personnel while using the Aarogya Setu app,” the soldiers were informed, said sources.
The Indian Army has asked its personnel to only switch on the location services and bluetooth features of the Aarogya Setu app while visiting public places, or when they are engaged in managing isolation centres, while on call for COVID-19 related assistance to civil authorities and while out of cantonments or military stations for essential administrative duties.
They have been told not to disclose their service identity including rank and appointment. The contact list of the user should not contain any reference to rank appointment or service. Army personnel have been advised to keep their mobile operating systems updated and to install antivirus protection on their cell phones.
The Aarogya Setu app has crossed the 5 crore downloads in just the 13 days since it was launched.
The app uses bluetooth, GPS, algorithms and artificial intelligence to notify users of their risk of catching the COVID-19 infection, by tracing the same data from other users of the app.
The app detects other devices with Aarogya Setu installed that come in the proximity of that phone. GPS tracks the location of the user in real time and bluetooth tracks if and when the user comes in close proximity with someone infected by COVID-19.
If a user comes into contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, they will be notified about it in a few days. The app has access to the Government of India’s database of known cases.