Aarogya Setu app contact-tracing data deleted: IT Ministry

The government added that the contact-tracing feature had been discontinued.

February 08, 2023 03:07 pm | Updated 11:35 pm IST - NEW DELHI

Representational image only.

Representational image only. | Photo Credit: AP

Contact-tracing data from the COVID-19 pandemic collected by the Aarogya Setu app has been deleted from government databases, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said in a written response in Parliament.

“In accordance with the provisions of the [Aarogya Setu Data Access and Knowledge Sharing Protocol, 2020], the contact-tracing feature of the Aarogya Setu mobile application has been discontinued and contact-tracing data collected through it has been deleted,” the government said in response to a question by Congress MP Dr. Amar Singh.

According to an RTI application filed by the Internet Freedom Foundation, that policy was discontinued by June 2022.

The Aarogya Setu app had raised some privacy concerns right after its launch in the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Ultimately, contact-tracing apps like it globally emerged as an inadequate solution to the tracing of potentially infected people, especially as the virus spread more widely. The government insisted that the app had nonetheless helped it identify hotspots in individual districts to quarantine and monitor.

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