17 Jul 2020

Sam Morgan's CovidCard hits a snag

From Morning Report, 8:27 am on 17 July 2020

A prominent entrepreneur is frustrated an alternative to the troubled Covid-19 app has hit a roadblock with officials.

Since March, TradeMe founder Sam Morgan has been working as part of a team to test the ability of a bluetooth contact tracing 'CovidCard'.

Six weeks ago they delivered a report to officials after field trials, but are yet to be given any indication of a decision. The project would cost $100 million and take about five months to roll out, which is why Morgan says a decision needs to be made quickly.

Meanwhile, politicians are continuing to push the public to use the Covid Tracer app, which only has about 10,000 scans a day.

Morgan told political reporter Charlie Dreaver people only have to carry the CovidCard and don't have to download or scan anything.

Morgan acknowledges that discussions around privacy would need to be had.

He did note in his report that the data is all securely stored on a person's card for 21 days and is not automatically stored in the cloud or elsewhere.

The cards do not track user location as they do not contain GPS capability.