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Coronalert will be Belgium’s new contact tracing app

© Belga

A Belgian tech firm is developing Coronalert, the country’s new contact tracing app, set to be rolled out after the summer to boost current contact tracing efforts.

Devside, an app-developing firm based in Brussels won over the contract to build the application and is preparing to release it in September.

It is expected the public’s use of the application will bolster the manual contact tracing done at call centres in all three regions of Belgium, which draw from health data.

Through sufficiently wide use, the app will aim to promptly warn users if they have come into contact with a person who has tested positive for the virus.

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The data collected through the app will also aim to provide information to help authorities better and more quickly determine where a new hotbed is beginning to emerge.

The app is expected to use Bluetooth technology and draw from the German tracing app Corona-Warn, according to the De Tijd.

Devside could not be reached for a request for comment at the number provided on their website.

The government’s choice of the little-known tech firm last week was seen with some surprise by industry observers, who noted that Devside appeared to have only five employees, including its founder.

A reverse Google image search by tech freelance writer Thomas Smolders showed that customer reviews featured on the company’s website —which have since been updated— used stock image portraits of people listed with different names elsewhere online.

In statements to BusinessAM, Deviside’s Violaine de Laminne de Bex said that the app-developing firm worked “in the shadows and does not publicise itself.”

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times