Screen4 partners with S4Encrypt for Covid-19 Testing

Screen4, one of the UK’s leading providers of health screening services, has partnered with S4Encrypt to help to automate the processing of Covid-19 tests purchased from its website.

As one of the world’s top drug and alcohol screening services for the travel sector, with operations in 140 locations across 40 countries, Screen4 was well placed to offer Covid-19 testing facilities when the pandemic started to have an impact in the UK. From its Barnsley, Yorkshire, premises it can process in excess of 3,000 Covid-19 tests per day, in conjunction with Oncologica, a testing laboratory based in Cambridge.

Contact began in June 2020

The first contact between S4Encrypt and Screen4 took place on 23 June 2020, by which time the UK was in a state of lockdown and reeling from the effects of the Coronavirus. This quickly led to technical discussions between Safe4, sister company of S4Encrypt, and the technology partners of Screen4, with the intention of integrating the process for receiving orders for Covid-19 tests with the use of the Safe4 vault as a means of delivering the test result to the end customer.

Alistair Stubbs, Safe4 CTO, came up with a solution design based on the use of the system’s existing capabilities in conjunction with a new Safe4 object type – the Event. This allowed each individual test – the Safe4 Event – to be associated with one or more customers who would each become users of the system.

How the process works

The primary requirement arose from the close association that Screen4 had built up with the travel sector, and focussed on the need for pre-travel testing. Many countries had determined that before anyone would be permitted to enter from abroad, the passenger would have to provide evidence of a negative PCR test for Covid-19.

Several airlines, including TUI, Virgin Atlantic and Qantas, as well as P&O Ferries, now direct passengers buying travel tickets to the Screen4 website, where Covid-19 PCR tests can be purchased. These include both self-administered and clinician-collected tests. The Screen4 internal systems then send data to Safe4 through the API, triggering the creation of a vault and an invitation for the traveller to create a user account.

After confirmation of the test, including time and location in the case of clinician-collected tests, the user is prompted to use their vault to record the barcode on the sample vial that is used to carry the PCR swab to the laboratory in Cambridge. This unique code also captures the precise time and date of entering the barcode, essential for the calculation of the pre-flight hours for the destination country: either 48 or 72 hours. After analysis of the samples by the laboratory the test results are transferred automatically to each individual’s vault. Safe4 then notifies the traveller that the result is available and produces a PDF certificate confirming the traveller’s details and the test result, which can be shown both on departure and arrival to satisfy the requirements of the destination country.

The e-wallet and the QR Code

In addition to the certificate, which can be downloaded to a computer or a smartphone, Safe4 also creates a pass that can be added to the e-wallet on most modern phones. Both the certificate and the pass carry a QR code that, when scanned, displays a page from the secure Safe4 website allowing independent verification of the test result.

The way forward

S4Encrypt and Screen4 are looking at enhancements of the service to include different types of test, as well as exploring the capability of the solution to capture evidence of a vaccination. This can be linked with an identity verification function that will capture a photograph of the individual, for additional validation of the traveller and the test or vaccination status. This Immunity Passport facility will help the travel industry to start to resume pre-pandemic levels of activity.

David Grouse, Managing Director of Screen4, believes that the association with S4Encrypt and the use of the Safe4 vault can help to achieve higher volumes and faster customer service. David believes that “the addition of the vault capability to deliver Covid-19 test results rapidly to our customers is helping us to streamline our operations and increase throughput, as well as bringing the result to the travelling customer more quickly and securely.”

Ben Martin, director of both S4Encrypt and Safe4, is delighted with the progress that has been made. He feels that “working closely with Screen4 has been a very productive process for us. We are conscious of the importance of handling the Covid-19 test process as quickly and efficiently as possible, bearing in mind the health consequences for the customer and the need to get our economy functioning again quickly. Using the system as an irrefutable means of proving vaccination status in the future will also help all of us to move towards an end to the disruption that everyone has suffered during the pandemic.”

The high level of security provided by the Safe4 vault is crucial to ensure that the personal health data being handled throughout the process is managed as safely as possible. Safe4 complies fully with the UK Data Protection Act 2018, incorporating the European GDPR. All the information captured in the service is held in UK-only data centres accredited to ISO 27001.

For more information, please contact us. We will be delighted to hear from you.

S4Encrypt launches the Safe4 Covid-19 testing application

In association with sister company Safe4 Information Management, S4Encrypt is delighted to announce the launch of the Safe4 Covid-19 testing application.

The challenge

The Covid-19 pandemic has challenged many businesses globally by making it extremely difficult for their workers to carry out their duties normally. Whilst many organisations have been able to function by assisting staff to work from home, there are many for whom physical attendance in a specific workplace is essential – construction, property maintenance, care for the elderly, retail, hospitality, to name but a few. In order to help such organisations deploy their workforce with minimum risk to health, Safe4 has completed the development of its Covid-19 Testing application.

The solution

The application developed by Safe4 is based on 5 key elements:

  • The creation of a secure vault in which each individual’s identity and test data can be held
  • Biometric identity verification using smartphone technology to ensure that the people involved are who they say they are
  • Facilitating an on-site Covid-19 antibody or PCR antigen test using a world-leading testing partner and PHE and MHRA approved laboratories and testing processes
  • Capturing the test result in the individual’s personal vault and providing a facility for this to be downloaded as a pass to a smartphone, so that it can be shown in a wallet bearing a QR code
  • The ability to present a landing page direct from the secure Safe4 site when the QR code is scanned, to allow the individual to be verified visually

The pass in the smartphone wallet presents the individual’s test result. When the QR code is scanned, the landing page allows both the identity of the individual and the test result to be verified visually.

Safe4Work

The service is aimed primarily at organisations with more than 20 employees, although it can accommodate businesses of any scale.

All of the data captured in this process is held in secure UK-based data centres accredited to ISO 27001, and is managed in accordance with well-established Safe4 standards, offering class-leading security and availability.

Please contact us if you would like any further information on how the Safe4 Covid-19 testing application can assist your organisation to get its staff back to work safely.

Dramatic increase in data breaches

Many thanks to Neil Partridge of PDA Legal for highlighting the astonishing number of data records that have been breached during the first 9 months of 2019. More detail is provided in his LinkedIn post.

S4Encrypt is working to deliver applications that will reduce the likelihood of data breaches by making the management of data safer as it transitions between organisations, and between different stages in a process. This is combined with the implementation of the Cyber Primed information security standard to help to mitigate the risks caused by human error or indeed lack of awareness of the risks.

Based on the use of the highly secure Safe4 vault, the applications delivered by S4Encrypt are aimed at the reduction of risk and the enhancement of regulatory compliance. Current projects include onboarding for conveyancing in conjunction with the HooYu identity verification software, capturing the highly sensitive identity data directly into a Safe4 vault as it starts its journey through the conveyancing process. S4Encrypt will also be providing an application to support the Cyber Checked questionnaire, a subset of Cyber Primed, aimed at SMEs and micro-SMEs who wish to reduce their exposure to the possibility of human error by implementing a series of measures to support best practice.

Please contact us if you would like to learn more about how S4Encrypt can help with the reduction of risk and the enhancement of operational compliance.

UK court rules email signature to be legally binding

Email signature is legal in the UK

In a landmark judgement relating to a property transaction, a Manchester court has determined that an email carrying an automatically-generated signature block indicates that the sender has agreed formally to the terms described in the message.

As published in The Register today, if the exchange of emails between two parties indicates that agreement has been reached, this is deemed to be legally binding. In the case referred to above, this had a dramatic impact on the value of the transaction.

Signing documents electronically can introduce significant efficiencies to the process of securing agreement to the terms of a contract. It is important, however, for all parties to be fully aware of the consequences of their actions. In recognition of this, the electronic signature facility introduced by Safe4 earlier in 2019 requires the signing party to add their password at the time of signing, and generates a record of the signature by means of an additional page appended to a PDF file containing a summary of the parties’ agreement to the content of the document. It also generates a unique and immutable verification code using a blockchain-like string.

In the United Kingdom this method of signing a document is acceptable to both Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, and Companies House.

For more information on how facilities of this sort can assist your business, please contact us.

Bank scammers steal £1 million a day

As published in the Daily Mail, the new figures reveal that in the run-up to the new code of conduct, banks actually cut back on the amount of money they returned to victims. In the second half of last year, banks paid back £51.7 million, compared to the £39.3 million in the first six months of 2019 – a fall of 24 per cent.

The UK Finance report breaks down how much money was lost to different types of fraud.

Investment scams accounted for the largest proportion of losses – a total of £43.4 million, twice the amount lost in the same period in 2018. The average victim, who is typically tricked into transferring money into funds or investments that don’t exist, lost £12,200. Just £2.9 million of this was refunded by banks.

More than a quarter of all authorised push payment scam losses were the result of invoice and mandate fraud. This is where criminals pose as solicitors or builders, for example, and intercept invoices sent to customers via email so they can swap the bank details for their own.

The number of impersonation scam reports also doubled compared to the first six months of 2018. Earlier this month, TV presenter Helen Skelton was conned out of £70,000 by telephone scammers claiming to be from her bank. UK Finance blamed the rise in fraud on data breaches and theft of personal information.