QR permissions to leave home received by SMS, this is how Greece is controlling the exits of its citizens

Greece has uncovered itself in this health crisis as one of the countries that is best containing the advance of the coronavirus, keeping its level of infected by a million inhabitants very low, 240 at the time of publishing this article, far from the 4,300 in Spain.

One of the measures adopted early by the Greek country has a technological basis: QR codes that grant temporary permits to leave the house, thus limiting excesses of outings, such as daily visits to the supermarket or long dog walks.

A QR as a quick pass to the police scan

This system, implemented on March 23, works with the sending of SMS by citizens, who must specify their name, their address, the reason for the departure and the estimated duration of the same. The message is sent to a number controlled by the Ministry of Civil Protection.

The Hellenes must wait to leave until the ministry approves the exit request using the QR code

Once the ministry approves the exit, the citizen receives another message back with a QR code that acts as a temporary permit for that specific exit. This code, which can be scanned at the request of the police in the middle of the street, shows the details of the exit. If the citizen is fulfilling those details regarding departure time and destination, there is no problem.

If the departure is not complying with them, such as hours later or going to a destination other than the one indicated, the fine amounts to 150 euros. Among the reasons allowed for the exit are going out to exercise, even in groups of two people.

Although he is contemplating a paper form to carry in his hand, having signed the date and time of writing for those who do not want or can use the SMS and QR formula, the system of the latter has been adopted en masse, ranging from one and two million daily requests in the first days with the system in force, in a country of ten million inhabitants.

Other countries such as France are using a very similar system, although with PDF forms instead of SMS, which also keep the last edition time of the form visible, something designed to prevent the picaresque of those who only fill them out when they are already on the street and you see an impending police check. In the French country, the fines are 135 euros for the first offense, 200 for the second if it is repeated in less than fifteen days (it goes to 450 euros if it is not paid on time).

On pourra générer le formulaire depuis son smartphone et le présenter aux forces de l'ordre qui scanneront un QR code:
📵 pas de collecte des données des usagers
🚫 lutte against fraud avec horodatage automatique du formulaire
Respect️ respect des gestes barrières grâce au QR code. pic.twitter.com/cEviLL0ya4

- Christophe Castaner (@CCastaner) April 2, 2020

The Dubai Police (United Arab Emirates) has also enabled a form similar to French, and countries such as Azerbaijan and Cyprus also have platforms based on sending SMS, which also allows their governments to have detailed statistics on the patterns of movement of its citizens, both geographically and based on day and time.

These methods serve not only to make police work on street traffic control much faster for both agents and citizens, but also to avoid cases of citizens leaving home too often: the controls they approve or They reject the request, they foresee excess departures. Something that in Spain can only be controlled through the visual memory of the police officers who coincide with the citizens who leave on a recurring basis.

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