Geneva: The World Health Organisation (WHO) has lauded Aarogya Setu, a mobile application that was launched by the Government of India for protecting the citizens during COVID-19. Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the health agency, said that the app helped city public health departments identify clusters and expand testing.

"Aarogya Setu app from India has been downloaded by 150 million users and has helped city public health departments to identify areas where clusters could be anticipated and expand testing in a targeted way," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The World Bank had recently also cited the Aarogya Setu app as an example of how digital technologies can help track the spreading infection. It was also ranked among the top 10 most-downloaded non-gaming apps worldwide in May 2020.

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It functions on Bluetooth, artificial intelligence and algorithms to calculate a user's risk of getting coronavirus and supports as many as 11 different languages including Gujarati, Marathi, Hindi and English. You can download the app from Google Play Store as well as Apple App Store.

Earlier in September, the government had assured the Parliament that the app has maintained utmost transparency in all aspects. He said that the app has been "indigenously designed to cater to the specific demographics of India, and the features and functionalities in the app are built accordingly.

Aarogya Setu is the biggest COVID-19 contact tracing app in the world with over 15.71 crore registered users, Sanjay Dhotre, Minister of State for Electronics and IT, had informed the Parliament. The app’s data is encrypted in transit as well as at rest. Personal information provided at the time of registration is encrypted before being uploaded to the back-end server, where it is stored in encrypted form, he said, adding that the data collected by the app is governed by stipulated protocols and policy.