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30th Jun 2021

Operating a vaccine certificate will be difficult according to expert

Ellen Fitzpatrick

The vaccine cert is being discussed by Government.

The plan for a digital vaccine certificate to allow people to prove they have gotten the job will be difficult to operate, according to an IT expert.

With indoor dining pushed back by two weeks, the government are now in talks to allow for only fully vaccinated people, or those who have had COVID in the last nine months, to be allowed avail of the service.

To prove this, a digital vaccine cert is in discussion which people could download via an app or in the wallet on their phone to show hospitality workers before dining indoors.

But according to Dr Ronan Kennedy, an IT specialist from NUI Galway, this idea will be difficult to operate and maintain.

He told that while a paper based system would be a whole lot easier to manage, it can lead to forgeries.

He said: “From a technology perspective, this could be difficult. A paper certificate system would be simple to administer, but easy to forge.

“If the intention is to have a digital system which verifies an identity against a central database, like the EU digital Covid certificate, that requires some sort of terminal that can scan a bar code and run a check.

“Installing these in every pub and restaurant across the country, or rolling out a mobile app, would be quite a task.”

He added that if there isn’t already a record of every vaccination, then everyone will need to manually apply for this cert, which will also be lengthy.