Singapore to make TraceTogether app mandatory from June 1


More than 90 per cent of the population have either downloaded the TraceTogether app or collected the TraceTogether token. - LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE (The Straits Times/ANN): From June 1, digital check-ins for contact tracing at places with higher footfall or where people are likely to be in close proximity can only be done using the TraceTogether app or token.

These places include shopping malls, workplaces, places of worship, schools, educational institutions, dine-in food and beverage outlets and gyms - where the national digital check-in tool SafeEntry has already been implemented.

The mandatory use of TraceTogether comes as more than 90 per cent of the population have either downloaded the app or collected the token, said the Smart Nation and Digital Government Office (SNDGO) and the Ministry of Health (MOH) in a joint statement on Thursday (April 22).

With this, other modes of SafeEntry check-in - such as scanning a SafeEntry QR code with a phone camera or the Singpass app - will be discontinued from June 1.

The existing requirement for SafeEntry check-ins at individual retail outlets such as supermarkets and departmental stores inside large malls will also be removed when TraceTogether is used for registering check-ins. This set-up is known as TraceTogether-only SafeEntry (TT-only SE).

"This is because all visitors would have already performed TT-only SE check-in at the mall entrances, and the interactions at these venues within the malls are generally more transient," SNDGO and MOH said.

Locations which are not venues where TT-only SE must be rolled out should remove their existing SafeEntry setup to increase convenience for their patrons. These places include small retail stores such as pharmacies, convenience stores and heartland provision shops.

The TraceTogether token and mobile app work by exchanging short-distance Bluetooth signals with nearby users of the token or app to track people exposed to confirmed Covid-19 cases.

The technology has helped identify 75 people who had to be placed under quarantine, but were likely to have been missed with a manual contact tracing process, according to the joint statement.

SNDGO and MOH urged app users to download the latest version and turn on their Bluetooth setting for effective digital contact tracing. Token users should also ensure that the tokens do not run out of battery.

Token users are advised to replace the device if there is a blinking red light or if the token does not emit light. They can do so at any community club and centre, or at token replacement booths set up at selected malls.

Those who have not collected their token can still do so at any community club and centre islandwide. More information can be found at token.gowhere.gov.sg.

On Thursday (April 22), the Ministry of Education (MOE) said students will not be denied entry to school after TT-only SE is made mandatory from June 1 should they misplace or forget to take their token or mobile phone with the app.

Schools will continue to use their internal system for attendance taking; students will not be required to scan their token or app to enter schools. MOE also encouraged students to write their name and class on the token to prevent losing the device. - The Straits Times/Asia News Network

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Singapore , TraceTogether , app , mandatory

   

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