Journal article

The acceptability and uptake of smartphone tracking for COVID-19 in Australia

Paul M Garrett, Joshua P White, Stephan Lewandowsky, Yoshihisa Kashima, Andrew Perfors, Daniel R Little, Nic Geard, Lewis Mitchell, Martin Tomko, Simon Dennis



In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many Governments are instituting mobile tracking technologies to perform rapid contact tracing. However, these technologies are only effective if the public is willing to use them, implying that their perceived public health benefits must outweigh personal concerns over privacy and security. The Australian federal government recently launched the 'COVIDSafe' app, designed to anonymously register nearby contacts. If a contact later identifies as infected with COVID-19, health department officials can rapidly followup with their registered contacts to stop the virus' spread. The current study assessed attitudes towards three tracking technologies (telecomm..

View full abstract


Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by anonymous philanthropic funding to the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, awarded to S.D. ( funder provided support in the form of salaries for the author P.G., and in the payment of participants, but did not have any additional role in the study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. The specific roles of these authors are articulated in the `author contributions' section.