Following the joint move by Apple and Google to create an API that would allow COVID-19 exposure to be tracked from mobile devices and communication between them via Bluetooth, Huawei has made a similar move.
Contact Shield API
Huawei has released 'Contact Shield', an API that will allow application developers to fight COVID-19. Contact Shield allows the Huawei HMS Core (v. 188.8.131.521) to accept this type of application. Like the Apple and Google solution, Huawei's also uses Low Intensity Bluetooth (BLE) technology to detect nearby devices, exchanging data with the detected devices and keeping these records anonymously.
According to Huawei, Contact Shield provides contact tracking services with full protection of user privacy, and users will be the ones to select whether they want to activate Contact Shield or not, knowing at all times the data we share.
The identifiers used are anonymous, will not collect personal information (such as location) and will be deleted after 14 days. If a user deletes the application, the data will also be deleted.
On the other hand, similar to Apple or Google (which allow the development of applications to the authorized Health Administrations), Huawei will only allow the use of the Contact Shield API to developers authorized by governments and evaluated by Huawei.
Apparently, the Contact Shield API uses the Decentralized Privacy-Preserving Proximity Tracing (DP-3T) protocol, whose goal is to simplify and speed up the process of identifying people who have been in contact with a person with COVID-19.
The DP-3T protocol, an open protocol created by an international consortium of engineers, epidemiologists, legacy experts, and technologists, has two different responsibilities:
- Monitoring and recording of encounters that occur between users at close range. At this point, communication via Bluetooth Low Energy is used.
- Inform other users that you have been in contact with an infected user.
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