Governor Burgum responds to tracking app criticism

FARGO, N.D. - (Valley News Live) Governor Doug Burgum responded swiftly to the criticisms of the Care19 app.

“I'm smiling because it's unusual that the app that has no commercial benefit, no data to sell, and has no data to share is the one being scrutinized," said Governor Burgum in a press conference on Friday.

The blowback came from the privacy app developer, Jumbo Privacy, which said the Care19 app was sharing user's location data with several third parties, including to those who may expose it to advertisers. Burgum said the Care19 app's intentions were always clear and transparent.

“We could have done a better job of updating the specificity in the privacy policy of how data was coming one way from Foursquare from the app,” said Burgum.

North Dakota Department of Health is still going to use the Care19 app and Burgum said that a second app, Care19 Exposure, is coming in a few weeks.

“Which will utilize the also completely private Bluetooth technology which is coming from Apple and Google," explained Burgum. "That will provide the opportunity for you to be notified if you’ve been exposed without giving up any of your personal information.”

Tim Brookins, designer of the Care19 app and CEO of ProudCrowd said in a statement to Valley News Live that "Jumbo Privacy is wrong" and his app protects user's information.

In the press conference on Friday, Governor Burgum also thanked those using the Care19 app, saying they are helping the economy restart.