Effectiveness of government contact tracing app called into question

As shopping centres around Thailand re-open for business, questions are being asked about the effectiveness of the contact-tracing procedures rolled out by the government. Most shoppers are now required to register their presence by providing their phone number each time they enter or leave a mall or store. Sometimes manually by a shop assistant physically writing down your phone number and times inside the shop. Others by using a QR code on their phones.

The theory is that customers can then be contacted and advised to get tested in the event that Covid-19 is detected at a location they have visited.

On Sunday, the first day of re-opening, huge crowds were seen at many shopping malls, including IKEA’s Bangna store in Bangkok, creating a backlog of hundreds of people waiting to register their details prior to entering. Of course this ended up being counter-intuitive to the entire process of trying to keep shoppers safe.

The registration process is now a requirement at most large shopping centres and chain stores. In shopping centres, the procedure needs to be carried out at each individual store they enter. Customers are also required to “sign out” when they leave, however it’s understood that many are not doing so.

Thai PBS World reports that although more than 2.6 million people checked in at various shops, only around 1.8 million bothered to check out again. In addition, users are not obliged to provide the correct phone number, as the system will accept any sequence of numbers.

All of the above has resulted in doubt being cast on the effectiveness of the system, with one businessman calling on the government to review the procedure. Poramate Minsiri, CEO of the Kapook news website recommended that officials should use the LINE app or the Facebook “check-in” procedure instead of recording phone numbers which may or may not be correct.

SOURCE: Khaosod English and Thai PBS World

Maya Taylor

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

Share
Published by
Maya Taylor

Recent News

Cập nhật tình hình COVID-19 tại Việt Nam (Ngày T7 30/5): Ghi nhận ca nhiễm nCoV mới chỉ 1 tuổi

Tính tới 18h ngày 30/5, Bộ Y tế ghi nhận thêm 1 ca nhiễm nCoV…

6 hours ago

Tourist and environment groups share concerns for new access piers for Maya Bay

The Chairman of Krabi Tourism Industry Council has shared his concerns about new piers and…

6 hours ago

New rules for Thai cinemas to re-open in Phase 3

As part of Phase 3 of the easing of Emergency Decree restrictions enacted to fight…

7 hours ago

6 guidelines issued for schools to re-open in July

The government is considering allowing schools in Covid-19 infection-free areas to open in July, and…

7 hours ago

Phuket officially reopens Monday, but with restrictions

Phuket is scheduled to reopen to outsiders on Monday, to coincide with the start of…

7 hours ago

Lâm Đồng: 135 học sinh nhập viện cấp cứu sau khi ăn bánh mỳ từ thiện

Tại Lâm Đồng mới đây xảy ra vụ ngộ độc nghiêm trọng, khi 135 học…

7 hours ago