Contact Tracing App by Philippine Red Cross

The RC143 Contact Tracing App

With the Covid-19 still apparent in our country, knowing the places where there is a high number of infected is helpful. In this way, you can avoid those places as well as help minimize the number and contact tracing. This is the reason why this contact tracing app was developed.

Last April 7, 2020, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) launched a mobile app called “RC143”. It’s an official app developed by PRC to help fight the spread of the Covid-19 disease. RC143 is named after the Red Cross’ community-based volunteer program. It uses the wireless, geo-location and sensory capabilities of your smartphone to trace or track the persons you have encountered (contact tracing).  It will also help you determine your likely level of exposure to Covid-19 and help you avoid high risk areas.

How Does The Contact Tracing App Work

The app will not collect or require you to input your name, location and other identifying information. It will simply depend on the location detected by the GPS system of your smartphone. When you meet a person, who uses the system your smartphones will then swap anonymous identifier beacons using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE).  

This identifier or technically known as “rolling proximity identifier” changes roughly every 15 minutes to prevent wireless tracking of the device.

How to Install and Setup RC143

The app is only available for Android users for now, but PRC will soon release an iOS version. Download the app from Google Play Store.

Open the up on your phone and go through the information provided by Red Cross regarding the app. Or, you can simply skip it.

RC143 welcome screen

If asked to turn on Bluetooth and location services, please do so. Then, input your Philippine mobile number to register. Use the verification code that will be sent via SMS to activate the app. You will then see the screen as shown below.

RC143 Contact Tracing App

If you log out of the app, you will need to go through the mobile phone registration to use the app.

Last Note

The app is a great help for us in containing the Covid-19 virus. It can help us avoid high risk area and backtrack people that we came in contact with. So, the more people uses the app, the more data Red Cross can collate. Thus, making the app more accurate.

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