If you downloaded the latest iOS update back in May, and any following updates, then congratulations…your COVID-19 infection status will likely soon be tracked by state health officials as part of each state’s contact tracing efforts.
Many iPhone users across the US have over the past few days started to notice a new setting under the “privacy” subtab of the iPhone health app. It looks like this, and allows users to “toggle on” COVID-19 exposure logging.
It’s all thanks to the latest update of Apple’s iOS operating system for iPhone, iOS13.5.
Let’s take a closer look.
Some on twitter have only just noticed the toggle button, and we must note that it appears to have been quietly installed by Apple in recent days.
Did your phone act up with no service a few days ago? What if I told you they secretly added #covid19 trackers. iPhones: settings/privacy/health. It’s there. Awake yet?
— Aubrey Huff (@aubrey_huff) June 19, 2020
A similar setting has been installed on Android phones.
Some users questioned whether Apple will truly respect their privacy regarding their COVID-19 status, or whether they’ve interacted with anyone who has the virus…or maybe even just passed them on the street or in the supermarket.
Honestly even if you turn it off I’m assuming it’s still on
— Evan (@ndafed1776) June 19, 2020
This is happening even as evidence suggests that most patients are infected by someone who either lives in, or frequently shares, the same space as them. Are you awake yet?