The Star: Capturing data through QR codes
On behalf of team YAB Dato' Seri Amirudin Shari, Selangor Task Force Covid-19 and SELangkah, I woud like to thank The Star for the coverage regarding SELangkah and the data capuring method to track individuals infected Covid-19 as well as preventing it from spreading.
Let's do all we can to fight this pandemic and give everyone peace of mind.
HAVING one’s temperature taken, writing down contact details and using hand sanitiser are part of the new normal when entering most places following the implementation of the conditional movement control order (MCO).
As such, businesses welcome the Selangor government’s Selangkah, which functions like a digital visitors’ logbook using QR (quick response) codes.
Selangkah is an amalgamation for “langkah masuk dengan selamat” (steps to enter safely).
Business operators can get the QR code for their premises via the Selangkah website.
Customers who visit any government or private premises, including offices, restaurants, shopping complexes and health centres, need to scan the Selangkah QR code before they can enter any premises.
They can use their phone to scan the QR code either when entering a building or making payment.
Tapak co-founder Tawfique Roseli said the company would use Selangkah across the three food truck parks it manages in Selangor.
“Since the Federal Government has made it mandatory for business operators to record details of customers that visit their premises, Selangkah is a more efficient and contactless method for data entry,” he said.
“It will also make it easier for us and the 100-odd food truck operators in Selangor when dealing with the public.”
Tawfique said Tapak, which also manages three food parks in Kuala Lumpur, has developed its own digital logbook for contact tracing purposes should the information be needed by the Health Ministry.
“We will use both Selangkah and our digital logbook as they complement each other,” he said.
Tawfique added that this was a small step for operators to take in ensuring everybody’s health and welfare in line with efforts to get the economy going because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
SS15 Ad Hoc Business Committee representative Datuk Samson Maman described Selangkah as a very good initiative.
“I support it and will encourage our business community to do the same. This is a workable and fast solution,” he said, adding that customers these days are reluctant to use pen and paper to write down their contact details.
However, Samson questioned the lack of collaboration between the federal and state governments.
“Many countries worldwide have started to move from centralised to decentralised systems for contact tracing purposes.
“Good initiatives that benefit the entire nation should be applicable via joint effort to the masses, irrespective of borders.”
Samson, who runs a digital printing business in Subang Jaya, said there should also be an integration of systems between different government levels.
“The Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) has already been issuing QR codes for business licences and we are required to display these at our shopfronts,” he explained.
“Why can’t MPSJ tweak the QR codes to integrate a contact tracing system, since they already have data on our businesses?”
Samson said the frequently asked questions (FAQ) on Selangkah’s data capture should be made clearer to allay people’s fears.
“There is no real effort to push this initiative. The local councils should create awareness among business operators about Selangkah since it is new.”
Stepping up safety
Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Amirudin Shari in a statement said Selangkah was aimed at easing visitors’ registration process for business operators.
Selangkah, which has been available since May 5, is also aimed at assisting the authorities with contact tracing efforts.
“Through this method, the Selangor Health Department can rapidly identify people who visited a particular premises, such as grocery store or market, on a particular date and time,” said Amirudin.
“This will allow tests to be carried out more quickly, reduce the infection rate of Covid-19 and enable the disinfection process to be expedited.”
He said Selangkah, which was developed by Menteri Besar Selangor Incorporated (MBI), makes data collection contactless and more efficient.
“Selangkah only records a person’s phone number as well as the date and time they visited a particular place,” said Amirudin, adding that other details such as MyKad or passport number, address and GPS tracking are not required or recorded.
“Selangkah will establish a list of people potentially exposed to Covid-19 if a cluster develops in that area.
“When a Covid-19 case is identified, the Selangor Health Department will activate Selangkah and trace people the patient may have come into contact with to inform them of the necessary steps they need to take.”
He said Selangkah was different from other contract tracing apps such as MySejahtera and MyTrace as it focuses on establishments, rather than individuals.
“Users are assured that their data can only be accessed by the Selangor Health Department and will be safeguarded by the state government. It won’t be used for commercial activities,” said Amirudin.
“While we can’t force people to participate, those who choose not to do so could jeopardise the health and safety of their loved ones and hamper the authorities’ tracking and tracing efforts.”
Some 150,000 business entities adopted Selangkah less than a week after it was launched. For details, visit www.selangkah.my