The “Luca” check-in app is to be linked to the federal corona warning app. This was confirmed by the Federal Ministry of Health of the SZ. This should make it easier for the health authorities to trace Covid 19 infection clusters. “We are working to ensure that both systems recognize the QR codes that are to be scanned at events,” the ministry said.
The federal app has so far warned people who have come too close to infected people, but it cannot recognize when people have been at the same event without being in close proximity to one another. In addition, it is not linked to the health authorities. It does not collect any data about its users that could be used to identify them. The health authorities can find out directly who was at a particular event and contact him through Luca.
So-called check-in apps are intended to make it possible to visit restaurants, shops and concerts earlier in the pandemic by making it easier for the health authorities to track contacts. Anyone entering a shop scans a QR code posted by the owner with their smartphone. If one of the visitors turns out to be infected afterwards, the health department can use the app to find all other people who were in the shop or at the concert with the infected person at the corresponding time.
The federal government has therefore opted for one of many check-in apps on the market. The Luca app from the Nexenio company was primarily given media presence by the rapper Smudo from the Fantastischen Vier. The state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has already bought the license for the app and connected its health authorities to it. Other health authorities are already using Luca.
A spokesman for Nexenio now said: “At Luca, the feature will work by mid-April at the latest.” It was initially unclear whether the integration of the federal app would also be completed.
The national Corona warning app is fundamentally structured differently than Luca. It does not store any data about its users that the state can use to identify them. In April, the Corona warning app is to have its own option for event registration, which, however, works without user identification. Then QR codes should also be able to be scanned with the federal app when attending an event.
In the course of the integration, however, a jungle of QR codes on the walls of bars and event rooms should be avoided, says the ministry: “You scan a QR code and have the option of storing it on both apps.” Both apps would complement each other: “The anonymous event registration of the CWA is mainly intended for private events. The Luca app helps to counteract the paperwork in restaurants etc. and to quickly inform the health department about further contacts in corona cases.”
From Nexenio it is said that the “anonymous risk assessment of the Corona warning app is supplemented by the Luca system in compliance with data protection regulations”. However, in contrast to that of the federal app, the source code of the Luca app is not public, which is why the majority of IT security experts have not yet been able to assess how secure the data at Luca actually is. Nexenio has promised to make the code public on March 31st.