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China wants to show: life is getting going again

However, there is absolutely no question of free travel. Those who want to be on the street must show a special color code with their smartphone. This color code indicates the extent to which someone may have been exposed to corona.

Those who can show the health status ‘green’ on their phone may, for example, travel by metro or sleep in a hotel. Those who have recently had contact with a sick person, but have not been quarantined for two weeks, will be assigned the digicode orange. And those who have code red show symptoms but are still waiting for a diagnosis.

Cities in motion again

One city is more active with the use of the color codes than the other, says NOS correspondent Sjoerd
den Daas. In the capital Beijing, the system is used loosely, while residents of Wuhan are strictly monitored in, for example, shops and public transport.

“If you go to a store or compound and someone has been there with orange, then your color code can also be changed,” explains Den Daas. “It is a very advanced mechanism that mainly uses location data. On the basis of this, people at risk are specifically isolated, and cities can get moving again in phases.”

Researchers at Oxford University last week recommended that other countries also start using digital color codes. At the same time, American media recently warned that the system will pass on personal data to the police.

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