On October 4, the Australian COVIDSafe app which was claimed in 2020 as a digital sunscreen by Prime Minister Scott Morrison was handed over to the Department of Health’s Digital Transformation Agency.
Speaking to Senate estimates on Monday evening, the DTA said the total cost up to the transfer date was just under A $ 9.2 million, with Amazon Web Services supporting 2.77 million Australian dollars in hosting costs.
In March, it was revealed that the agency was spending around A $ 100,000 per month on accommodation, but had allocated A $ 200,000 each month for “future changes.” At the time, the price of the app at the end of January was A $ 6.75 million and hosting was just over A $ 900,000.
Taking DTA’s numbers at face value, that would mean hosting spending has increased by A $ 1.87 million over the past nine months and a bit, which is consistent with its monthly execution rate. of 200,000 Australian dollars.
The DTA had previously claimed that it could reduce its operating costs to A $ 60,000 per month.
âI estimated it was AU $ 100,000 per month to host COVIDSafe at the last hearing. This ended at AU $ 75,094.98 per month. And we have made a number of performance improvements to it. ‘application over the past two months, which is expected to see this session at around A $ 60,000 per month starting July 1, “former DTA CEO Randall Brugeaud said in May.
âThere has been a series of tuning efforts that we’ve applied, a pretty big improvement on the backend, which is the COVIDSafe National Data Store and the way data is stored while the app is running. ”
A total of 7.7 million Australians are registered on the app.
âWe recorded over 37,500 potential encounters, we also presented 2,825 unique close contacts, and we were also able to identify through reporting information from New South Wales 570 close contacts,â said DTA Managing Director Jonathon Thorpe.
In July, the DTA removed the Issues tab from the app’s GitHub listing, meaning users couldn’t report bugs.