STOP COVID. The output of the application StopCovid has been to the image of the genesis of this project : chaotic. The tool in contact tracing is now available on the App Store and the Google Play Store for the iPhone and smartphones running Android. But it must not be wrong !Summary Download StopCovid Operation of StopCovid personal Data and freedoms Opinion of the Cnil Volunteerism and anonymity StopCovid on iPhone, How effective ?
[updated June 3, 2020 at 09h25] The application StopCovid, allowing it to be alerted if one has crossed in the past 15 days another user is positive for the coronavirus, has been made available to the general public this Tuesday, as announced by the government. It is, therefore, available as a download on the Google Play Store for smarphones running Android and the Apple App Store for the iPhone (iOS). But this output has not been a long quiet river, no more than the development of the application that has generated a lot of debate and delays.
Announced in the morning and then by noon, the application StopCovid has finally been released after 16 hours on the Google Play Store, and with even a little bit more of a delay on the Apple Store, or after 20 hours. During the few hours of late, many mobile users have found themselves in the blur. Thousands of downloads of the application "Stop Covid19 Cat" have been made, so that this app does not correspond at all to the French tool, but a software catalan the operation is very different. Once on the store of Apple or Google, it will be necessary to opt for "StopCovid France".
holders of the project StopCovid have for the moment not clearly explained the reasons for this latest delay to the ignition. Yesterday, Bruno Sportisse, president of the national Institute of research in informatics and automatics (Inria), responsible for the development of the aplli, spoke of"ultimate settings" when the office of the secretary of State of the Digital Cedric O spoke on RTL "a little season" without more details.
once the confusion is removed, install StopCovid on your smartphone is extremely simple : you just have to make it on Google Play if you have a phone with Android, or on App Store if you own an iPhone. You will find the download buttons below.Download StopCovid On Google Play On the App Store
of course, as promised by the government, which is at the origin of the deployment of this application, StopCovid is completely free. The public authorities have done well to know that its installation, which accompanies the second phase of the déconfinement, is done on a voluntary basis. Specifically, the app StopCovid allows a person who is positive for the coronavirus to automatically alert all users with whom it has had a "prolonged contact" recently (within the last 14 days), at least one meter and for more than fifteen minutes, in order that they might be tested in their turn.Screenshot of the application StopCovid © Economie.gouv.fr Screenshot of the application StopCovid © Economie.gouv.fr learn All about StopCovid How the application works StopCovid ?
In a few words, StopCovid is a voluntary and temporary, so that, once installed on smartphones, to establish connections between its users and the alert among them the contacts of those who will be tested positive for the coronavirus. An alert which will allow these "case contact" to see a doctor and isolate themselves pending the results of a screening test. The connection data is kept for 14 days.
The minister of Health Olivier Véran and the secretary of State of the Digital Cedric O had granted a long interview to the World right from the Wednesday, April 8, to discuss the project of tracking, or digital traces, to better control the outbreak of coronavirus and, in particular, prevent new outbreaks occur at the end of the confinement. They had explained the principle in the guidelines : "develop an application that could limit the spread of the virus by identifying the chains of transmission. The idea would be to prevent people who have been in contact with a patient tested positive, so they test themselves, and if need be, that they are taken in charge very early, or they confine themselves", stated Cedric O in this interview.
"When two people cross paths during a certain period of time, and at a close distance, the mobile phone of the a record the references of the other in its history. If a positive case is found, those who have been in contact with this person are defendants in an automatic way", added, then, Cedric O. Since this presentation, many details have been released. The ministry of Economy and Finance issued, on may 21, a press in which the operation of the application has been diagrammed as :Operation of the app StopCovid. © Economie.gouv.fr
Cedric O was touted from the outset in The World this concept of "contact tracing," which "allowed to go back to patient sources, to identify strings of contamination and to curb the spread of the epidemic" in some countries. The challenge of this application, developed at the national Institute of research in sciences and technologies of the digital (Inria), with several european partners, is particularly important. A tracking of the population could prevent the déconfinement is synonymous the second wave of the epidemic. Cedric O was nevertheless hammered for weeks that StopCovid was only a "brick – also uncertain – of a comprehensive strategy to déconfinement and a digital tool among others in the fight against the epidemic". Since 11 may, moreover, these are brigades human "contact tracing" that have been put in place, personnel dedicated to the research of the "contacts" of patients tested positive.A debate on the personal data and liberties
The idea of a digital traces, but also of its potential excesses, been lurking for a long time in the mind of the executive and the opposition. Emmanuel Macron has put in place as early as mid-march a committee of experts, the Committee analyses, research and expertise (Care), responsible, in particular, to think of a "digital strategy for the identification of persons who have been in contact with infected people". During his hearing before the fact-finding mission on the coronavirus of the Assembly on the 1st of April, Edouard Philippe had referred to a plot "voluntary" in France. "It is necessary to explore all the doors open, full of technologies may prove to be useful", wore it already at Matignon. On the same day, Cedric O was also confirmed that the government was studying this kind of device.
But this long preparation of the opinion has not prevented the debate from exploding, including within the majority, as reported by le Parisien as of Tuesday 7 April. The same in Paris has published the following day an interview with Stéphane Séjourné, mep LREM and a former adviser Emmanuel Macron, who felt that the digital traces was "to admit that authoritarian regimes are better equipped than democracies to respond to the crisis". The former political advisor to the presidency of the Republic did not hesitate, then, to speak of "Big Brother" and urged the government to keep "this philosophy based on the respect of rules and confidence in individuals."
Several other members of the majority have since shown that they were wind standing against the application, some wondering even if they were not going to slam the door LREM if the app were to be adopted. The departure of Aurelian Tache of the group LREM to the Assembly in mid-may is probably not totally foreign to the application project StopCovid, the mp for the Val-d'oise, who also heard his disagreement with this topic since the beginning of the crisis of the sars coronavirus. A ninth political group composed of 17 deputies macronistes and former "walkers" has been created under the name "Ecology democracy solidarity". Presented as "independent", "neither in the majority or in the opposition", he has many opponents to the project StopCovid.
in Addition to the doubts in the majority, all groups of the opposition have also expressed their dissatisfaction on StopCovid. Communist party, France, rebellious, socialist Party, Europe-Ecologie-The Greens, UDI, The Republicans, Rally the national... Of the extreme left to the extreme right, they all wanted to have their say on this tool, presented by the executive as a key element of the strategy of déconfinement French. And they will have to have some patience to do it.
Before the vote on the 27th may, the app-tracking to digital was originally scheduled to be discussed Tuesday, April 28, at the national Assembly, in the plane of déconfinement presented by Edouard Philippe to the deputies. Originally, StopCovid should even be the subject of a debate and a vote dedicated within the Palais Bourbon. It has, however, been completely ruled out of discussions by the Prime minister on this day, without a lot of care. Edouard Philippe had reported then that "in view of the uncertainties" on StopCovid, it was "good just to say [...] how it will work precisely". "I have no doubt that the engineers will work hard and succeed to run this project", had already indicated the head of government, promising the appropriate "a specific debate followed by a voting-specific". But he also recognized that the numerous reviews received by the app were based".An app that has been validated by the Cnil
Before the vote of parliamentarians, the national Commission on informatics and liberties (Cnil) had also definitively validated this Tuesday, may 26th, the principle of the application, in an opinion which pointed out that the numerical solution respects the data protection. The Cnil welcomes, in particular, that some of its recommendations have been followed on the anonymisation of contacts, the duration of the backup data, the fact that the ministry of Health who has the charge, or even on the freedom to or not to install it on their smartphone and without any legal consequence (negative on the access to public transport for example).
"It's a good thing we took the time to ensure that there are sufficient guarantees regarding the protection of privacy in order to implement an application that is not trivial or insignificant", said Marie-Laure Denis, the president of the Cnil, on Europe 1 on Tuesday. She promises that StopCovid will preserve "the information of the people and their right to erasure of data recorded on the mobile phones and the central server".
other developments more technical, such as a newthe encryption algorithm or the fragmentation of encryption keys allow, according to the Commission, "to ensure the impossibility for a single player to operate a diversion of use of the data". "The actual usefulness of the device will have to be more precisely studied after its launch", nuance, however, the notice provides some additional recommendations, but concluded that StopCovid "can be legally implemented".
#COVID19 The CNIL gives its opinion on the conditions of implementation of the application #StopCovid https://t.co/JOkIZ7FwQW pic.twitter.com/zHvGVXON3Z— CNIL (@CNIL) May 26, 2020
As of Sunday, April 26, in a first notice available on its website, the members of the college of the Cnil had already considered that "the application [could] be deployed, in accordance with the general regulation of data protection (RGPD), if its utility for the management of the crisis [was] sufficiently proved and if certain safeguards [were] made." The commission was called, however, for the government to "use great caution", considering that the app StopCovid might generate a "phenomenon of addiction" to the devices for tracking. She recalled that this type of application raises "novel questions in terms of protection of private life".
Interviewed by the Senate on Wednesday, April 15, the president of the Cnil, Marie-Laure Denis, had already urged the government to make the application "temporary". "It is really necessary that its duration does not exceed the duration necessary for the treatment of the health crisis," said the president of the Cnil, referring also to "protection of personal data", "data deletion", the essential possibility of being able to uninstall the app and that the consent is "informed". "The refusal to download the application will not reduce your ability to move", she added.
A new hearing of Marie-Laure Denis was held Tuesday, may 5 at the national Assembly. She indicated to mps that the Cnil as it heads had already begun to dissect the project StopCovid, and that the commission would be "particularly attentive to the duration of conservation of data", as well as to their "relevance". The president of the Cnil requested that the data be "deleted within a fairly short, well before the end of the epidemic". It seems that she had been heard...Volunteerism and anonymity meets the government
"It is important to keep the fantasy of an application to be liberticidal.It is a tool deliberately installed and which can be uninstalled at any time. The data would be anonymous and deleted after a given period of time," replied the World's Cedric O to the detractors of StopCovid as early as 8 April. Main guarantee displayed by the defenders of the tool contact tracing : the mobile application is based on a voluntary by the users of smartphones and the Bluetooth communication that allows you to retain anonymity.StopCovid can "save lives"
"It is important to keep the fantasy of an application to be liberticidal. Our hypothesis is that a tool deliberately installed and which can be uninstalled at any time. The data would be anonymous and deleted after a given period of time," replied the World's Cedric O to the detractors of StopCovid as early as 8 April. Main guarantee displayed by the defenders of the tool contact tracing : the mobile application is based on a voluntary by the users of smartphones and the Bluetooth communication that allows you to retain anonymity. The Bluetooth is cited since the beginning of the project as a compromise between efficiency of the app and personal data protection. This standard of communication would be more gentle than a GPS tracking, which would provide fewer guarantees in terms of anonymity, or that a demarcation telephone, making a call to the base stations of the operators.
The secretary of State to Digital has reiterated on 11 April in the Grand evening news of Europe 1 : "The application that we develop in connection with the Germans and the Swiss is completely respectful of our values, our laws, privacy, and it does not give any data", he said. "The facility will be voluntary, the temporarily stored data, and the total anonymity. Not even the State will not be able to trace the contaminated people". In the JDD Sunday, April 26, he again hammered home that this application will be "voluntary, anonymous, transparent and temporary." "The State does not have access to any data identifier, and there will be no geo-location". "The installation of the application should address fully the free and full consent", insisted the secretary of State. "In the arbitration between stress and health individual liberties, we pushed all the way to the freedom of the individual", could it be argued.
To recall, in his remarks Monday, April 13, Emmanuel Macron had also accompanied his speech on the application of tracking warnings. "You should not neglect any track, any innovation," said the president of the Republic, adding immediately that "this epidemic does not weaken our democracy nor bite on some freedom," calling for a "digital application dedicated [...] on a voluntary basis and anonymity". Edouard Philippe has already said that he was opposed to a tracking "mandatory" and that it would be more open an installed application on the basis of a "voluntary commitment", the idea being not to create a "Big Brother".A long argument in favour of StopCovid
The plan of com' was again reinforced on may 3 with the publication, by the same Cedric O, a long post on the platform Medium. On the merits, it is estimated that StopCovid will be invaluable, with other tools, to avoid a rebound of the epidemic in the déconfinement. It is necessary, according to him, "do everything to cut the 'departures of fire' as quickly as possible, including the use of digital tools as 'StopCovid', in a highly supervised and proportionate". The digital solution would be highly useful according to him, "in the urban centres [...], public transport, public places, or shops", where the human resources will not allow us to reconstruct the channels of transmission as effectively as the processing of data.
Each course can "opt-out of these tools for philosophical reasons" , but that would mean "in this case" to "accept a significant risk of sick and dead extra", also prevents Cedric O who says that StopCovid "is not a monitoring application", "is not an application to tracking" in the sense of geolocation, "is not an application of denunciation", "is not compulsory", "there is nothing a black box", and would even many safeguards.
In The Figaro on may 26, Cedric O still wanted to push a little more the nail, ensuring that StopCovid "will automatically be turned off and the data will be all erased within six months after the end of the State of health emergency". "You can't be better-saying in terms of protection of privacy that this app !", de jure the secretary of State. "Nobody, not even the State, will have access to a list of people who are diagnosed positive or with a list of social interactions between users."The protocol "ROBERT" in question
for the sake of transparency, the source code of the app has been unveiled as part of the Tuesday, may 12, "so that all the coders interested" can "go and check how the application works" and in particular, whether a risk of diversion for purposes of monitoring of the population is found has also shown Cedric O. The source code is available on the Gitlab Inria a site that allows coders and developers to share their work. There is a question in particular of the protocol used, called "ROBERT" (for "ROBust and privacy-presERving proximity Tracing"), which is at the heart of the application.ALSO READ A presentation of the protocol ROBERT dated 18 April on the website of the Inria another document of the Inria on the protocol, ROBERT a PDF of The details of the protocol by ROBERT on the Gitlab Inria
researchers franco-germans, who also had published as early as mid-April some technical details on the app StopCovid, have confirmed that the protocol to ROBERT, does not use geo-location data of the smartphone, but the Bluetooth technology. It will allow "the sharing, by the persons detected positive Covid-19, a list of anonymous identifiers corresponding to the people that they have to cross during the incubation period of the virus". Concretely, a server will generate the codes anonymous, which will be disseminated at the interactions between users to allow then to alert the right people if one of them is tested positive for the coronavirus.
The catch is that this server provided by the protocol ROBERT will reference each user in a central database in the form of a unique identifier. A system judged to be very (too ?) "centralized" by several experts, who argue that it makes possible a control of the tool by its owner, namely the State. Among the main opponents of the centralized system is a protagonist of size : Apple, supporter for its share of a "decentralized". The american giant is also repelled by the diffusion in the background (in other words when the user is not viewing the app) of the famous codes anonymous generated via Bluetooth. A detail that directly contradicts the model of security of its system iOS, used to protect the data of its users. However, this work in the background seems essential to make the connection between the users even when the app is not open or when the phone is locked at the bottom of a pocket.The iron arms of France in the face of Apple
To solve part of this problem, Apple and Google have announced Friday, 10th of April a partnership "with the aim of helping governments and health agencies to reduce the spread of the virus", but "integrating the privacy and security of the users at the heart of the design". Their solution, called the "Exposure documents", is based on an API that is "decentralized". She quickly proved to be incompatible with StopCovid. Questioned in the Senate on this issue as early as mid-April, Aymeril Hoang, former director of the cabinet of Mounir Mahjoubi Digital and adviser to the government, has pleaded for the sovereignty and warned against the "turnkey solution" of the two giants. Arguments repeated, word for word, or almost by Cedric O who was confirmed on 20 April before the Senate's law commission that the model proposed by France would not change one iota on this point.
The secretary of State to Digital has not then been continuously confirm this position, as in the Sunday Newspaper of April 26, or on BFMTV on Tuesday 5 may. Even if it has always been "en discussion with Apple" France did not want to give in to the injunctions of the u.s. firm, believing that "mastery of the health system, the fight against the coronavirus, it is the business of the States" and the option "centralized" brought as much guarantee of security as the "decentralized" advocated by the two giants of the digital world. "In a common platform in Germany, France, Italy, Spain and Portugal [...] we recall that the choice of a country's health should not be constrained by the choice of a company, as innovative as it is", further indicated Cedric O on may, 26 in The Figaro.
"there is indeed the solution proposed by Apple and Google that application as we have a number of problems in terms of privacy and in terms of interconnection with the health-care system", said the minister in early may on Medium or even on BFMTV. "It is for these problems, not because Apple and Google are villains, that we refused to go through their solutions", added the secretary of State.
beyond The political speeches, the control of data is at the heart of the problem. Access to the metadata, that is to say, the anonymized recordings made by StopCovid may also allow the government and its health authorities to measure the evolution of the epidemic in a geographic scale is very fine. "This allows you to generate statistical data for monitoring the epidemic, always preserving the anonymity of the users," recently confirmed by a specialist of the folder in The Figaro. If the keys were given to Apple and Google, the government could say goodbye to these datas and therefore, in this analysis.StopCovid on iPhone : the rules of the iOS bypassed
If both Google and Apple have banned any new application taking advantage of the crisis of the sars coronavirus since the start of the pandemic, there was a hope that an exception would be granted to an application to government by the two american giants. But never Apple didn't bow to a government, was-t-he in the United States. France, which remained braced on his solution, therefore had to work around the problem. "Like what was presented to the NHS of the uk, the French hope to be able to partially circumvent the restrictions of american software", wrote the newspaper Les Echos as of 5 may, which evoked an app going background tasks, Bluetooth, but that is likely to "wake up" when a smartphone passes near another. A solution that is very consuming battery and imperfect, which has, however, been chosen.
In The Figaro on Tuesday, may 26, Cedric O has well and mentioned an app that can "wake up" other applications to close. More specifically, once launched, StopCovid will work, even if it is not used, but as long as the iPhone is in the works. It will be able to continue to make and send signals to other smartphones equipped. When the iPhone is in sleep mode, however, the app will need to be "woken up" by another smartphone that is emitting such signals, but only if it comes to phones Android. If it is other iPhone, who are not in a capacity to issue permanently, then it will remain "asleep". If the API Exposure notification from Apple and Google, StopCovid will therefore be ineffective in some particular case. In only groups, teams and iPhone, whose devices are concurrently in sleep mode, it will not work...
Vincent Bellet, an engineer who worked on the solution, provides on the site iGeneration, that the app "will play its role in places where there are people, such as public transport, because there will almost certainly be one Android smartphone in the vicinity, or an iPhone user who will use his phone". Cedric O for its part, has promised repeatedly, "on a solution that will work very satisfactorily on all the phones" and that Stop Covid "works very well on iPhone."A launch date of StopCovid late
in the Face of all these difficulties, the release date of the application StopCovid could only be delayed. This was finally confirmed in hollow Cedric O on the platform Medium on Sunday, may 3, as on BFMTV on Tuesday, may 5, in announcing a release date on 2 June, for the second phase of the déconfinement. "We are following our roadmap. We hope to have something for the June 2", indicated the secretary of State on the chain info. A date that he has maintained in The Figaro on Tuesday, may 26, and that seems to be confirmed since its adoption in Parliament.
The secretary of State said, however at the beginning of April that its app could come out "soon". "The task force is hard at work for several days to develop a prototype, but I can't tell you if it will take us three to six weeks to develop", indicated by the secretary of State in the World on 8 April. In Les Echos on April 1st, he believed it was possible a development "in a fortnight". The time of development by an agency of the State or by a service provider was assessed at ten days. These deadlines are very optimistic, therefore, have been revised upward, Cedric O indicating as early as Friday, April 17, that StopCovid would not be ready for his examination before Parliament on the 28th. A review that finally proceeded without it...
The deadline of 11 may, the date of the beginning of the déconfinement, has not been teneu. On France info on Monday, 20 April, the spokesman of the government Sibeth Ndiaye had however indicated that "the ideal is that this is an application that is ready for the 11 may. "I don't have the certainty, it has been hard", she added. "The goal is to be ready for the may 11, but it is a challenge", because "there are still several technical problems to solve" and "we will not compromise on safety", for its part, had added Cedric O in his interview with the Newspaper of Sunday the 26th of April. The delay will be, therefore, quite widely exceeded, as he acknowledges in le Figaro : "We would have liked to be ready for the may 11, but this has not been possible for technical reasons".A wrist strap connected also in preparation
According to Les Echos, "multiple regions", anxious, appeared to be ready mid-April to test another application that was developed this time "by Orange and five other French groups". Orange, Capgemini and Dassault System had in fact started work on an app, that they felt able to launch as soon as April 20. Finally, they have joined the project StopCovid since. The same journal also showed a bracelet of tracking developed by a company specializing in networks for telecom low-speed, Sigfox. The bracelet would be independent of a smartphone and the 5G. A guarantee in terms of data recovery. This solution, which would be to "pass through connected objects that do not depend on Android or iOs," has also been mentioned by Aymeril Hoang. But this last one has tried this workaround "more complex, more expensive" and therefore asking for "more time".
Even the sound of a bell at Cedric O who sees it as a solution for those who do not have smartphone. On BFMTV on may 5, the secretary of State has even confided that"part of the team is dedicated to try to find another solution — for example, a box or a bracelet that would go to the phones". But he warned : the development of such a solution will take more time than the application StopCovid, " has minimum of a couple of extra weeks ". The use of ultrasound in a second version of the application is also on the table according to the Journal du Net.The effectiveness of StopCovid very uncertain
there is one last fundamental question : StopCovid will it be really effective in the fight against a new epidemic wave of coronavirus ? In The World April 8, Cedric O called on the French to "keep a fantasy opposite, the one of the application that magic would solve everything. There is a technological uncertainty, and this is only a brick an option in an overall strategy of déconfinement". The chairman of the scientific Council in charge of advising the government on the Covid-19 was also expressed reservations before the Senate as early as 15 April. Jean-François Delfraissy believed that it would be necessary to complete the app by human means of tracing and monitoring of the epidemic on the ground. "The Koreans have a squad of 20 000 people to track down contacts. There is a human behind the digital. But it does not in France. If it has not, an app for digital will not work", said the professor, who has since made a recommendation in this sense.
The scientific Council has indicated in a notice made public on Saturday, April 25, that it was necessary that "mobile teams contact tracing, and isolation" are put in place, "in particular to target populations in remote or insecure or in the case of outbreaks of transmission (clusters)". These teams would be "complementary platforms" as StopCovid and "would be coordinated with a direct link to it", wrote the experts. "In support of the app, it takes a very wide use of tests for the persons having crossed a sick person", added Jean-François Delfraissy. Cedric O when indicated in the JJD on April 26, that StopCovid would be an element of the system sanitary surveys, which is at the heart of the déconfinement, in order to avoid the epidemic spread". These brigades have been confirmed by Edouard Philippe the presentation of the plan of déconfinement on 28 April and began work on may 11.How many users of StopCovid
The question of the rate of penetration of the app StopCovid is also raised. If it is based on the consent or the volunteer, it could be installed on a smaller portion of phones, which would reduce the efficiency. The issue of older workers is also evident. Then they are more likely to develop severe forms of the coronavirus, they are also the ones who are the least well equipped in smartphones. The president of the Cnil Marie-Laure Denis was at his Senate hearing in mid-April, the equipment rate of more than 70 years at only 44%, compared to 98% among the 18-25 years old. But Cedric O minimizes. According to him, in large urban areas where StopCovid will be the most useful, the penetration rate is 90%. "Our first target is people who are very mobile, especially in dense area. This is why we will strongly encourage its use among the populations of the urban active population who take public transport. These hold smartphones to more than 97%", he says to the Figaro on Tuesday, may 26.Date Of Update: 03 June 2020, 03:57