The government has released the source code of its own Covid-19 contact tracing program, Aarogya Setu, on applications development stage GitHub, based on India’s policy on Open Source Software.
The government expects to leverage the experience of high technical brains in the country to enhance the stage by releasing the source code, that is a key requirement of privacy specialists. The platform was helping frontline employees in the struggle against the outbreak.
Principal Scientific Adviser Prof. K. Vijayaraghavan said that historically contact tracing has been done manually during the time of fingering, but it usually takes weeks. “… it allows us to fight the disease effectively,” he said.
The government has also initiated a bug bounty program so that security researchers and the Indian developer community can test the effectiveness of Aargoya Setu and improve its security or build user confidence.
Neyyog CEO Amitabh Kant said, “Transparency, privacy and security have been the core design principles of Arogya Setu since its inception and the opening of source code to the developer community reflects the government’s commitment.”
The source code for the Android version of the application is available for review and collaboration, while the iOS version will be released as open source within the next two weeks.
About 98% of Arogya Setu users are on Android platform.
The app has been downloaded by more than 114 million users on May 26, more than any other contact tracing app in the world, the government said in a statement.
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Ajay Sahni, Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and IT said, “Although the Personal Data Protection Bill is before Parliament, we have implemented the principles of data privacy in designing this app.”
So far, the platform has reached over 900,000 users and has helped advise them on quarantine, caution or testing.
Among those recommended for testing, on May 26, an overall Kovid-19 positive rate of about 4.65% has been found to be approximately 24% positive for infection.
He said, “India is willing to share learning from our perspective about technology to fight Kovid-19 and leverage the solutions available to the rest of the world and any government can use it to fight the epidemic. ”
It has identified more than 3,500 hotspots across the country at the sub-post office level to the Arogya Setu team, it added.
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