The report on the international analysis of contact tracing apps in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic is now available

Author: Adrià G.Font   /  29 of September of 2020

In the wake of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, many nations have focused part of their efforts on finding digital tools that allow them to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic more efficiently and use these tools to reduce the spread of the disease. Aside from news apps, the real revolution during this pandemic have been apps that allow governments to get accurate data on contagion areas or on people who have had contact with infected individuals.

The TIC Salut i Social Foundation, together with the i2cat Foundation, and commissioned by the Ministry of Health, has analysed the applications developed by different international governments whose main objective is to trace contacts (Contact Tracing Mobile Applications) of COVID- 19 via mobile phone and notify users if they have been in contact with people exposed to the disease.

The aim of these applications is to identify new risks of contagion that enable the application of appropriate measures to interrupt the spread of the disease and thus deal with the current situation.

The analysis carried out consisted of a review of the digital applications and tools launched in recent months by different governments around the world in order to address the traceability of contacts diagnosed with COVID-19. The purpose of the project is to present a series of recommendations and aspects to consider when developing an application of this nature that will allow us to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic that has erupted in recent months.

This analysis will provide an overview of the trends that different governments are following in terms of the use of these technologies and how they are being adopted in their territories. Data privacy, security, usability, and interoperability, among other things, are some of the relevant aspects that have been reviewed in this analysis.

The report covers the applications that have been developed worldwide to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, the technological framework adopted and includes all considerations regarding data protection, as well as possible risks and threats.

Widespread consensus

Finally, the report shows that there is a widespread consensus across the Members States of the EU, as recognised by the European Commission, on the important role that these applications can play in contact tracing, restricting the spread of the disease and breaking the chains of infection. These Apps are also especially important in providing information about the level of circulation of the virus, evaluating the effectiveness of physical distancing and lockdown measures, and guiding de-escalation strategies.

i2CAT Foundation




TIC Salut Social Foundation

  • The purpose of the project is to present a series of recommendations and aspects to consider when developing an application of this nature.