Google has updated its Passes API to enable a simple and secure way to store and access Covid-19 vaccination and test cards on Android devices.
Developers from healthcare, government agencies, and organizations authorized by public health authorities to distribute Covid-19 vaccines and/or tests will have access to these APIs to create a digital version of Covid-19 vaccination or test information.
This will roll out initially in the US, followed by other countries, the company said in a blog post.
Once a user stores the digital version of the Covid-19 Card to their device, they can access it via a shortcut on their device’s home screen, even when they are offline or in areas with weak internet service.
To use this feature, the device needs to run Android 5 or later and be Play Protect certified. Installing the Google Pay app is not a requirement to access Covid-19 cards.
The card has been designed with privacy and security at its core.
The user’s Covid-19 vaccination and test information are stored on their Android device. If a user wants to access this information on multiple devices, the user will need to manually store it on each device.
Google does not retain a copy of the user’s Covid vaccination or test information.
The information in the user’s card is not shared by Google with its various services or third parties and it is not used for targeting ads, the company said.
A lock screen is required in order to store a card on a device. This is for added security and to protect the user’s personal information.
When a user wants to access their card, they will be asked for the password, pin or biometric method set up for their Android device.