Science and Technology
09.04.2020

Smartphones track recent contacts of people infected with Covid-19 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

Using Bluetooth signals, the system will notify people who are close to an infected individual 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

magem Christine Daniloff, MIT
System uses Bluetooth signals to locate network of Covid-19 infected people 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a
System uses Bluetooth signals to locate network of Covid-19 infected people 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

Imagine you were diagnosed as positive for Covid-19. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a Health authorities begin tracking contacts to contain infections, asking you to identify the people with whom you have been in close contact. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a The obvious people who come to you at first are your family, co-workers. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a But even during quarantine, we continue to have contact with people we will not remember. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a This can happen during a short trip to the bank or the supermarket. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

A team led by researchers from MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is developing a system that enhances this manual contact tracking by public health authorities, preserving the privacy of all individuals. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

The system depends on short-range Bluetooth signals emitted by the smartphones of the people involved. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a These signals represent random sequences of numbers, compared to \ 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a If a person has a positive result, they can send the list of sounds that the phone has released in the past 14 days to a database. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a Others can scan the database to see if any of these sounds match those captured by their phones. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a If there is a match, a notification will inform that person that he or she may have been exposed to the virus and include information from the public health authorities about the next steps to be taken. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a followed.

This entire process is carried out, maintaining the privacy of those who are positive for Covid-19 and those who wish to check whether they have been in contact with an infected person. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a \ 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a \ 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a Not allowing tracking to an individual. \ 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

This automated and private contact tracking approach will be available in a number of ways, including through the first work launched at MIT in response to Covid-19 called SafePaths. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a This broad set of mobile applications is under development by a team led by Ramesh Raskar of the MIT Media Lab. The design of the new Bluetooth-based system has benefited from SafePaths early work in this area. 1814a2c300f02f227bcb04312cd2671a

pt

Source: MIT