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COVIDSafe – Are you?

In the first 24 hours of its launch, the Australian Government’s COVIDSafe Application was downloaded by more than 2 million users. As many of you would already be aware, when you sign up to the Application, you provide your name (or an alias if you wish), mobile number, postcode and age range.  In doing so, you join millions of other Australians by allowing the Application to detect if and when you may have been exposed to COVID-19 and, in the event that you have been, assist Government and Health Officials to quickly track down those who you have been in contact with and who may also be at risk.
While many have actively promoted the Application, there are also many who have voiced their concerns about personal privacy.  More specifically, many seem concerned about how the information that is collected by the Application may later be used by the Government. 
For those who have read the Application’s Privacy Policy, you will have noted that it advised that your information and privacy is strictly protected, and the limited information that is gathered is only used in the event that it is related to the COVID-19 virus and will be used ONLY for reasons of public safety.
The Application works through Bluetooth connections, by recognising other nearby devices with the COVIDSafe Application.  The Application notes the date, time, distance and duration of the contact with each other person who has the Application working. If someone who has been properly using the COVIDSafe Application is diagnosed with COVID-19, State and Territory Health Officials will then be able to efficiently and accurately contact those who may have been exposed through the Application, and provide them with advice as to what may then be required. 
If you have been following our blog series, you will have read about the impact that COVID-19 is having on those currently engaged in Family Law negotiations and Family Court proceedings.  COVIDSafe is by no means an end-all solution to the problems that our clients currently face.  However, it may be able to provide some level of reassurance to those parents who are wary of their former spouse’s adherence to  governmental guidelines while caring for their children, and how they would be able to monitor their children’s possible exposure to COVID-19 when they are in the other parent’s care.
No, the Application will not prevent your former spouse from going to a crowded shopping centre or having people over to their house.  However, in the event that your former spouse, or the children, are exposed to COVID-19, they will be notified as soon as possible so that the appropriate measures can be taken.  Now that the governmental restrictions have been cut-back, it is important that any exposure to COVID-19 is acted upon immediately to prevent the virus from spreading.
To be effective, you, your former spouse, your children (if they have their own devices) and anyone else in regular contact with you or your children, would need to ensure that the COVIDSafe Application is running as you each go about your daily business and come into contact with other people. 
If you wish to discuss this further, or you need advice regarding the care arrangements for your children during this difficult time, please contact our experienced Team. 


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Tuesday, 20 April 2021

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