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India makes source code of contact-tracing app public

The bulk of India's roughly 500 million smartphone users have Android devices and the source code for the app's iOS version will be released in the next two weeks

May 27, 2020 / 10:38 PM IST

India said on Tuesday it was making public the source code of its coronavirus contact-tracing app Aarogya Setu for Google's Android smartphones, a move digital rights activists said will boost the security of users.

The bulk of India's roughly 500 million smartphone users have Android devices and the source code for the app's iOS version will be released in the next two weeks, India's tech ministry said in a statement.

"Transparency, privacy and security have been the core design principles of Aarogya Setu since its inception. And opening the source code up to the developer community signifies the government of India's continuing commitment to these principles," Amitabh Kant, CEO of the government think-tank NITI Aayog, told a news conference.

Aarogya Setu ('Health Bridge') was launched by the government in early April as a key tool in containing the spread of COVID-19. It is currently used by over 115 million Indians.