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Aarogya Setu iOS Version Gets Open Sourced Over Two Months After Promise

The government originally promised to open source the iOS version of Aarogya Setu within two weeks after its Android release in May.

Aarogya Setu iOS Version Gets Open Sourced Over Two Months After Promise

Aarogya Setu app has over 15 crore users in India

  • Aarogya Setu iOS code has been released on the government’s OpenForge
  • Its Android code is available for public access through GitHub
  • Aarogya Setu app has been criticised for user privacy issues since launch

Aarogya Setu iOS code has been released over two and a half months after NITI Aayog open sourced its Android version. The source code has been provided on OpenForge, the government's equivalent to GitHub. However, the Aarogya Setu app's Android version's source code is available through GitHub. The repository of the Aarogya Setu iOS version doesn't provide access to its server-side code. This is identical to its Android client of the contact tracing app where too the server-side code is not available to the public.

The team behind the Aarogya Setu app announced the release of its iOS source code through a tweet posted on Thursday. The code is available for access through OpenForge. It includes the files enabling the app experience on iOS, though there are no details around the app's server-side code that helps developers understand the operations of the app.

The government initially open sourced the Android version of the Aarogya Setu app in May. At that time, NITI Aayog promised to release the source code of the app's iOS version in the next two weeks. National Informatics Centre (NIC) during the launch also announced a bug bounty programme to incentivise researchers finding flaws in the app.

This open sourcing of Aarogya Setu's iOS version comes just after threat intelligence firm ShadowMap allegedly found the log-in credentials used by its developers. The blog post by the company was pulled shortly after it came into the limelight on social media. However, its cached version was still available at the time of filing this story.

“We noticed that one of the Aarogya Setu servers had been recently updated and one of its developers had accidentally published their Git folder into the public webroot, along with the plain-text user name and password details for the official Aarogya Setu GitHub account,” the blog post said.

This wasn't the first security issue with the Aarogya Setu app as security experts raised privacy concerns and urged the government to open source its code following its debut in April.

Aarogya Setu has over 15 crore users in India. The app is available for download on devices running on Android, iOS, and KaiOS. It was originally managed by the NITI Aayog, though the NIC team took its charge recently.

In 2020, will WhatsApp get the killer feature that every Indian is waiting for? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.


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