Forum: Do more to boost take-up of contact tracing tools

A photo illustration of the contact tracing app TraceTogether.
A photo illustration of the contact tracing app TraceTogether.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

I applaud the Government for introducing the TraceTogether app and SafeEntry digital check-in system to help keep us safe.

Unfortunately, the take-up seems disappointing.

I understand that some people have privacy concerns about TraceTogether, but I see no reason to avoid the SafeEntry system.

It is not uncommon, at places such as FairPrice supermarkets, to see people queueing up to get the barcode on their identification card scanned. They are mainly elderly people or those who may not be familiar with technology even if they carry smartphones.

The Government could perhaps invest in ambassadors to guide these people in the use of the SafeEntry system.

It is convenient, especially if you use a phone that has a camera function to scan QR codes.

All these procedures are designed to help keep us safe, and they may remain a part of our lives for some time. Let us encourage everyone to use them.

The TraceTogether app might be more difficult to use, but it is vital in places where the SafeEntry system is not in play, such as on public transport. Again, we should invest in resources to help get people on board.

Ang Miah Boon

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 13, 2020, with the headline 'Do more to boost take-up of contact tracing tools'. Print Edition | Subscribe