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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 26/04/2021

New service to enable faster contact tracing of COVID-19 cases

A new digital service to support businesses in collecting contact details for contact tracing purposes, Check in Scotland, is now available in participating venues.

More than 6,400 venues have so far signed up to use this voluntary service for businesses in Scotland, supporting them to effectively collect the contact details of their visitors and customers.

The Check in Scotland service will enable customers to quickly and securely provide their contact details by scanning the official Test & Protect Check in Scotland QR code poster via their smartphone camera or by downloading the Check in Scotland app.

Any contact details collected will be held in a secure, encrypted data store unique to each venue for 21 days. Unless information is requested by public health officials as part of their contact tracing efforts, visitor data is automatically deleted on day 22. Venue and visitor details will not be used for any other purpose.

Businesses that can use Check in Scotland include:

  • pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes
  • tourism and leisure businesses, such as theme parks, museums and cinemas
  • close contact services, including hairdressers, barbers, beauticians, tattooists, sports and massage therapists
  • services run by local councils, such as libraries, leisure centres and registration offices
  • cremation authorities, burial authorities, places of worship or funeral director service rooms offering funeral services
  • places of worship

Alerts will be sent by SMS, email or letter depending on what details users provide and will be clearly marked as being from NHS Scotland Test and Protect.

The Check In Scotland service is designed to complement the separate Protect Scotland app, which alerts users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

People will only be advised to self-isolate if contact tracers believe they were in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Otherwise they may be advised to watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, and to book a test only if they or someone in their household displays symptoms.

Further information

For more information, go to the Check In Scotland website.

The Check In Scotland app is available to download for free via the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for anyone over the age of 12. To use the Check In Scotland service, customers need to be able to access the internet on a phone or tablet. The service has been designed to work across the vast majority of mobile phones that support browsing the internet.

For older phones that cannot read QR codes, customers can download QR code reading apps. If they cannot scan a Check In Scotland QR code, a short URL is printed on Check In Scotland posters that can be typed into their phone's internet browser.

If a customer does not have a mobile phone or cannot access the internet, the business or venue they are visiting must take their contact details using a pen and paper.

The Scottish Government has updated its Test and Protect collection of customer and visitor contact details guidance, to request the collection of the name and contact details for every visitor to premises, to create consistency across the range of settings where this is requested or mandated in Scotland, and at the same time ensure that relevant data is captured to assist the Test and Protect contact tracing service. Read the Test and Protect guidance.

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