The FIFA World Cup 2022 is around the corner, and Qatar is ready to receive sports enthusiasts from all over the world as the hosts this time. The country has placed a couple of requirements for all visitors who will stay through this period. One of those is a mandatory obligation to download and install two government-run phone applications- Ehteraz and Hayya.
Qatar Government Will Track You With These Two Apps While at the World Cup
First, before traveling to Qatar, visitors entering the country will need to show a negative result from a PCR test taken 48 hours before arriving or from an official rapid test taken within 24 hours.
After, all visitors over the age of 18 must also download Ehteraz, an application that tracks people’s movements and infection status. Therefore, the app requires permission to track someone’s location. Some of the functions the app can perform include:
- Read, delete or change all content on the phone
- Access to connect to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
- Override other apps and prevent the phone from switching off to sleep mode.
- The ability to make direct calls via your phone and the ability to disable your screen lock.
Travelers arriving in Qatar must download the Ehteraz app on their mobile phone devices and activate it upon arrival at Qatar’s entry ports. To do so, the traveler must have:
- SIM card from one of Qatar’s service providers (Ooredoo or Vodafone) or an international SIM card.
- Mobile internet connection.
- The smartphone should support Android 6, newer versions, or IOS 13.5 and later versions.
- Download and install the app on your mobile phone either via Google Play, Apple App Store, or any online search engine.
- SIM cards and smartphones are available for purchase at Hamad International Airport and Abu Samra border crossing if the passenger does not own them before arrival.
It is mandatory for all citizens, residents, and visitors to install the Ehteraz App on their bile phones and have it running at all times when outside of their homes.
The second app is almost similar. Hayya is an event app that helps people track their World Cup tickets and gives them access to Qatar’s free Metro system.
- Hayya can prevent the phone from switching to sleep mode
- Capture someone’s exact location
- View network connections
- Asking for access to share your personal information with almost no restrictions.
Privacy experts have called these apps into question, considering the amount of data collection and location tracking they have to conduct. However, Qatari officials maintain that there is no reason for the public to distrust the app.