Official app for the Green Pass
02. July 2021
Easy and safe handling of the three EU-compliant certificates: vaccinated, tested, recovered. The Austrian Federal Computing Center (BRZ from German Bundesrechenzentrum) implemented the Austrian app.
With the kick-off of the EU-compliant certificates within the European Union, the Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection, in cooperation with the BRZ, is making the Green Pass available to all citizens as a digital application. The app enables users to store and securely handle their COVID-19 certificates. The app includes the EU compliant QR code certificate needed when entering and travelling within the European Union.
The new app solution saves and processes the data of the EU-compliant certificates exclusively offline, i.e. only on the end user's mobile phone. Once uploaded and saved, the certificate is shown in a simplified version. Only essential information is displayed in the app, such as first name, last name, COVID-19 vaccine and the EU-compliant QR code. The certificates are not stored in a cloud, as is usually the case with app solutions. As a result, all EU-wide and national data protection obligations are complied with to the highest degree.
“The implementation of the Green Pass took place gradually. We started with the individual certificates, just in time for the EU-wide start. Now the Green Pass app is also available. Since the certificates of the Green Pass are particularly sensitive health data, we had to observe strict legal framework conditions in the development of the app. The BRZ not only has a health policy, but also a socio-political mandate in regard to data protection. I am pleased that with the 'Grüner Pass' app we can now present an application that guarantees the best possible protection of health data”, explains Health Minister Wolfgang Mückstein.
The official web application "Greencheck" enables easy verification of certificates
The “Green Pass” app is now available for the iOS operating system and will soon also be available for Android in the respective stores. In view of the approaching holiday season, the Austrian Green Pass app makes traveling within the European Union much easier. Additionally, in Austria the app solution enables secure and quick proof that a person has been vaccinated, tested or recovered. The verifying body (e.g. in a restaurant, cinema, theater, fitness studio) can check the validity of the certificate presented using the official verification application "GreenCheck" - available at greencheck.gv.at. A mobile phone or tablet with a working camera is required for the digital verification. With this web app solution, too, no personal data is transmitted - the test takes place offline, i.e. only in the device of the examiner. Since the EU-compliant QR code of the certificates cannot be read by an ordinary QR code reader, verification is only possible using a specially programmed application.
BRZ implements the “Green Pass” app for Austria
The BRZ is responsible for the development of the app. With the Epidemiological Information System (EPI) it already provided the technical basis for the “Green Pass” in Austria. The technical implementation was based on the open source app of the Swiss Federal Office for Information Technology and Telecommunications (BIT from German Bundesamt für Informatik und Telekommunikation), with which the BRZ is networked in international cooperation EURITAS, among others. In addition to the necessary adjustments for Austria, extensive security reviews were carried out despite the high time pressure during implementation.
“The app for the 'Green Pass' is the logical next step after the implementation of the EU-compliant certificates and makes 'vaccinated, tested or recovered' verification easier for the whole family. We are pleased that the app was implemented quickly and, above all, securely thanks to our international contacts and that a further step in the direction of digitization of the certificates was taken. A big thank you goes to our colleagues at the BIT in Switzerland, who supported us with the implementation for Austria, ”said BRZ managing director Markus Kaiser.