On Tuesday, the Robert Koch-Institute published the App “Corona-data donation”, which aims to bring new insights about the spread of Covid-19 in Germany. Two days later, the App of 160,000 people has been used. The resonance is well – the function, however, is less. Numerous User complaints about technical problems.
The principle of the App is simple and easy to explain. The RKI want to take advantage of the fact that Smartwatches and Fitness wristbands can record, among other things, the resting heart rate, as well as information on the sleep and the activity level of their users. “In the case of acute respiratory disease, these vital signs will change in most cases. Therefore, typical Covid-19-symptoms such as fever can be due to the App detected,” explained the Institute.
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The App is not serving the tracking of contact persons, stressed the RKI. You should, however, help to understand the infection focus better. The RKI know to not at any time personal data such as Name or address of the App user. There is only a need to enter a unique postcode. Positioning and location data from the devices would not be queried. The participants will also be asked their gender, age as well as size and weight, indicate on a 5-centimetre and kilogram.
technical problems: data donation-App does not count days
tens of millions of users of Fitness bracelets and the computer clocks in Germany are willing to donate their data, however, slowed down by technical problems. Especially, the counter in the App that totals the number of donated days is causing problems.
“is The number of “donated days” always 0″ or “I’m an early adopter, and since the first day. Nevertheless, the counter to Zero, what’s wrong?” are just some of the complaints from users on Twitter. Other announced already to delete the App due to malfunction after only a few days.
The RKI is aware of the Problem. On the Website of the App, the Institute commented as follows. “Currently, the display of the donated day is in the App not always up to date. Due to the large utilization of the Server, the query of the data is a little delayed. The data will be retrieved at a later time and will then be incorporated in the analysis. We are working to increase the capacity.”
User criticism: No Feedback, not all trackers work
Also in the Apple Store and the Google Play Store, the reviews of the App are mixed. Almost all the Users are on the good intentions of the App agree. Criticism is, however, practiced on the Feedback to give the App, but not there. After entering the zip code, it will not go any further; you do not know, whether the data have the donation, so the Tenor of many users. Also, the App is not compatible with all types of fitness bracelets compatible is criticised. Reuters/Alexander Heinl/dpa fitness bracelets are according to a survey more and more popular – it privacy but concerns.
“Currently, all over GoogleFit and Apple’s health related devices as well as devices from Fitbit, Garmin, Polar, and Withings/Nokia support”, says the RKI on the App Website. The Integration of additional devices is planned, but not for all providers. “Not all manufacturers of fitness bracelets and Smartwatches offer the ability to transfer data digitally to other services, such as data donation-App.”
privacy is not enough: society for Informatics criticized data-donation-App
The society for computer science (GI) exercise, harsh criticism of the implementation of the data protection in the case of the “Corona-data donation”. The App does not meet “in relation to data protection and IT security are the basic requirements,” – said in a statement. “The Code of the application is proprietary and not publicly documented and verifiable, as is actually the case for such Apps is imperative. Also, other important principles such as the Purpose, anonymity, data minimization and protection against unauthorized access are not met either, or at least unclear.”
The App was programmed for the RKI by the Berlin-based company mHealth Pioneers, which also operates the health data platform Thryve. The fitness tracker data to be transmitted from the Smartphone is encrypted only in Germany, running servers, such as the RKI said. Personal data would be deleted at the latest after ten years.
the Reported corona virus cases in Germany (click on your state)
“Unfortunately, the present data is donation-application surprisingly poorly made, and therefore the protection of the population rather detrimental”, criticised GI-President Hannes Federrath. “People’s trust in technical solutions will be provided so that already at an early stage, and unnecessary to a hard test.” Praise Federrath showed, however, compared to other ideas. “There are very good approaches with digital tools, the spread of the Virus to counteract, such as the PEP-PT-a Framework for contact tracing.”
in Europe, has developed Smartphone technology to control the Covid-19-epidemic is expected soon after Easter as a concrete Corona-Warning-App. The Chris Boos, one of the leading researchers of the project PEPP-PT in an interview with the German press announced the Agency. The RKI is one of the possible institutions that could publish the App in Germany. #Corona care: Germany helps – FOCUS Online
- On our interactive map of Germany showing which organizations in your area offer help.
- We cooperate with Germany’s largest social network for neighbors: nebenan.de. Here, everyone can offer help or a form to ask for help – for yourself or about the grandma.
- In our #corona care-Facebook-group have formed a network of more than 11,000 people. You post offers of help or requests.
- Under the E-Mail address firstname.lastname@example.org help seekers get personal advice.
- anyone Who wants to hang slips of paper with the request for help or offers of help, will find templates to Download.
- We are looking for the stories that make, now, courage! Of small, brilliant ideas and people with big heart.
- We organize actions against the Corona-Koller: fitness coach Detlef D! Soost presented each day, a Workout, editors read them exciting stories …
How big is the Problem of the interfaces?
The Federal privacy Commissioner Ulrich Kelber said that his staff had discussed the RKI in the run-up. He holds a data protection-compliant implementation is possible. “The citizens must clearly and be consistent informed of what data the App collects and for what purpose.” However, Kelber warns of another Problem: the interfaces of the fitness tracker. dpa/Wolfgang Kumm/dpabild Ulrich Kelber (SPD), Federal Commissioner for data protection, speaks at a press conference.
“in General, I would point out that the level of data protection in the case of Fitness trackers and SmartWatches, depending on the manufacturer, very different,” the Federal privacy Commissioner. “This interface is probably the biggest Problem from a data protection perspective.”
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RKI-Chef Wieler defended the data-donation-App counter-criticism
the Name was “chosen “data-donation-App” unhappy. “Even if Affected, shall forward to the RKI your personal data is voluntary, does not give you the right to your data and can revoke your Einwillung at any time”, there Kelber to bear in mind. “I expect additionally that is regularly evaluated whether the App fulfilled its purpose. If it does not, it must be finished processing.”
RKI-chief Lothar Wieler defended the App against criticism. Without the collection of zip codes did not make sense. The RKI also aware of the responsibility to deal with the App. She had been with a private provider developed, commercial use of the data was excluded. With the collected data, the Institute wants to create a map of what the regional distribution of potentially infected people. Federal President went on to say, “Each of them has saved people’s lives”