COVID vaccination cards to appear on Android in US

Google says it will be storing any vaccination and test information on Android devices, and not on its infrastructure.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor
Image: Google

Google said on Wednesday it has updated Passes API on Android to handle COVID vaccination and test information.

"Starting today, developers from healthcare organizations, government agencies and organizations authorized by public health authorities to distribute COVID vaccines and/or tests will have access to these APIs to create a digital version of COVID vaccination or test information," the search giant said.

The functionality is available in the US, and available on Android devices running version 5 or greater that are Play Protect certified, and have a lock screen enabled. Users will not need to have Google Pay to use COVID cards.

"The user's COVID vaccination and test information is 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 said.

Google said it does not have a copy of "the user's COVID vaccination or test information" and does not share it with "various services or third parties and it is not used for targeting ads".

Availability in other countries would follow, Google said.

Earlier this week, Google changed the information requirements for people with Play Store developer accounts, in an effort to validate whether developers are real.

While it currently only asks for email address and phone number, Google will now ask whether the account is personal or for a business, a contact name, physical address, and verification of email and phone details. Google will also mandate that Google Play Console users use two-factor authentication.

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