Protect Each Other: Download the COVID Alert App

Last modified: 
11/26/2020 - 12:03

Get a phone alert if you may have been exposed to COVID-19 (coronavirus), and let others know if you test positive without sharing any personal information.

Get COVID Alert

Available for iOS and Android

Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Why download COVID Alert

Along with physical distancingwearing a mask, and other important steps, knowing what to do if you have been exposed to COVID-19 is another way to protect yourself and your community.

But how do you know if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19? If you get sick, how can you make sure even strangers you’ve been near take the right steps to protect themselves and others? That’s where COVID Alert comes in.

With the free COVID Alert app, you can:

  • get a notification if you may have been exposed to COVID-19 get advice on what to do next
  • anonymously notify other app users you've been nearby if you test positive for COVID-19

COVID Alert will not:

  • collect, store or access any personal data, or health information
  • tell you if you’re currently near someone who’s tested positive
  • tell you about outbreaks in your city or neighbourhood

COVID Alert is completely voluntary. You choose to download, use, or delete it. The more people who use it, the more effective it will be in helping to protect each other and our communities.

Your privacy is important

The app does not trace your location.

COVID Alert does not use GPS and will never request location permissions.

The app does not collect your contact information.

COVID Alert does not know your name, phone number or any other contact information.

No health information is collected.

When you share that you’ve tested positive, COVID Alert doesn't share any information that can identify you.

Read the full privacy policy here.

How it works

As you go about your day, COVID Alert runs in the background and:

  • uses your smartphone’s built-in Bluetooth function to detect how close you are to other people with the app
  • exchanges anonymous codes with other, nearby app users every 5 minutes
  • saves the codes on your phone for 14 days

The random codes cannot be used to identify you or your location.

If you test positive, you can use the app to notify others. Here's how:

  1. When you test positive for COVID-19, your health care provider will provide you with your one-time key when you receive your result.
  2. The healthcare provider may also provide you with details about when you were likely infectious.
  3. Enter your one-time key into the app
  4. Give the app details about your infectious period which were provided by your health care provider
  5. Allow your phone to share your random codes, which will notify people you've been near

The app only uses random codes – it does not collect or share any health information about you.

Every day, when you have an internet connection, COVID Alert looks for matches between the random codes on your phone and the random codes of people who have told the app they have tested positive.

Even if it finds matching codes, the app won’t know who they belong to.

If the app finds matching codes, it means that:

  • In the past 2 weeks you were within 2 metres of an app user for more than 15 minutes, and that user has since tested positive, or
  • You were in contact with a user who has tested positive during the days they were most infectious (usually two days before symptoms began)

If either of these apply to you, you will get an alert with:

Because no personal information or location data is shared, the app will not know where or when you were exposed.

Phone compatibility

COVID Alert should work on any smartphone released in the last 5 years including:

Get more information or support

Learn more about COVID Alert from the Government of Canada:

Get more information about privacy