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Coronavirus: Almost 300,000 SMS requests approved over the weekend

More than 288,000 approvals for moving outside where granted via SMS messaging platform 8998 over the weekend, head of the office of the deputy ministry of research, innovation and digital policy Kyriaki Pantziarou said on Monday.

She said the system worked with a various providers, so there was no problem with the number of messages it could cope with.

The idea is, she added, “to keep people at home and not to test the system.”

Regarding mistakes  being made by people making the requests, she said the messages had improved and now 85 to 90 per cent were being written correctly.

People wanting permission to circulate must include various details such as their ID, the reasons for going outside and other information.

Asked if there was a limit on requests per person, she said there was a possibility that this could be set up but it has not yet been done.

This was being discussed with providers who are ready to implement whatever the government requests.

The government has threatened to further restrict movement after some people abused the system.

Pantziarou explained there was also the possibility of tracking how many messages have been sent from one phone in case the government was thinking about implementing more stringent measures.

It is possible that the number of messages could yet be restricted but this is up to the president, she said.

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