Everything You Need to Know About the Protect Scotland App

Last Updated on 15/01/2021 at 09:00

Find out more about the new Protect Scotland app, from NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect. What it's for and why should you download it to help control the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

What is the Protect Scotland App?

This is an app that will let you know if you've been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) by alerting you with an Exposure Notification.

If you test positive, it'll let the people you've spent time with know that they've been near someone that's tested positive. Don't worry, they won't be notified that it's you.

It will then give them clear guidance on what to do next - like if they should book a test for themselves and/or begin to self-isolate.

Information about how to download the Protect Scotland app

How does it work?

The app works by using your Bluetooth, which you must keep on. You can find out whether your Bluetooth is on or off on iPhone or Android by going your Settings. From here it picks up other phones with the app and detects whether you've spent over 15 minutes in close range to that other device.

It's anonymous and uses Random ID's so it doesn't track things like your location.

The data it picks up about being in close contact with someone with the app will be deleted after 14 days.

What happens if I test positive?

If you test positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), you'll be given something called a Test Result Code. You can then put this into the app. It will let everyone else with the app that you've been in close contact with know that they've spent time with someone who has tested positive. It will give them clear advice on what to do next.

They will not be told who has tested positive, only that they've spent time with someone that has.

Why should I download it?

The more people that download it, the better chance we have of stopping the virus from spreading. It alerts people quickly. That means they can then take action to stop the virus spreading to others. It helps protect you and the people around you, and might help stop local lockdowns.

What about my privacy and data?

The app doesn’t hold personal information, identify you to other app users, or track your movements.

It uses a little bit of your mobile data, but you don't need to connect to WiFi or mobile internet.

It runs on your phone in the background. You can continue to use your phone and apps as normal.

How do I download it?

The Protect Scotland App is available through the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

Anyone aged 12 or over that live in Scotland can use this app.

Go to protect.scot to download the Protect Scotland app for free.

Watch the video below for more info:

App update in December 2020

Please note that between the hours of 00:01am on Monday the 14th of December and 08:30am on Tuesday the 15th of December the Protect Scotland App sent 900 people a notification telling them to self-isolate. Usually, the app sends up to 250 notifications and due to the high volume that occurred between Monday and Tuesday some of these are believed to be false.

If you received a notification between Monday the 14th of December and 08:30 on Tuesday the 15th of December you must contact the Test & Protect team on 0800 030 8012 to check if this notification was correct.

The First Minister has assured people that this was a one-off blip and if you received a notification outwith these times you should self-isolate.

Check out #YSHealth Panel members Ewan, Claire and Poppy chatting about their experiences of using the Protect Scotland app in the video below.

More information about Coronavirus

Visit our dedicated homepage for information about COVID-19, and how it might affect you.