Higala App: How to Register and Get QR Code in Cagayan De Oro

Through the Higala App, residents and non-residents in Cagayan de Oro (CDO) City can generate their unique QR Codes to be able to enter establishments within the city.

(UPDATED) Since April 2021, the city government of Cagayan de Oro has mandated the use of the Higala App in all city establishments in accordance with Ordinance No. 14023-2021, also known as the "Higala App Ordinance," which institutionalizes the use of the said app as the primary contact tracing solution in the city.

As a result, establishments must scan the QR Code of every person who enters their establishment. Furthermore, all individuals will be required to re-register in the application because they will not be permitted to enter establishments unless they have a Higala QR Code, or sometimes referred to as Higalaay QR Code by the locals. [Know here how to get a Higala QR Code.]

There is a penalty for establishments that do not comply with the ordinance's implementation. For the first offense, the penalty is P1,000 and a one-month suspension of the business permit; for the second offense, the penalty is P3,000 and a three-month suspension of the business permit; and for the third offense, the penalty is P5,000 and revocation of the business permit.

Any individual caught using a non-personal QR code, or forging will be fined P500 for the first offense, P1,000 for the second offense, and P1,500 for the third offense.

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What is Higala App?

The Higala App, derived from the Cebuano word for "friend," is the City of Cagayan de Oro's official contact tracing solution.  It's also known as the Higala Online Contact Tracing Application, and it allows people to log their basic information after they register. After completing the registration process, a one-of-a-kind OR Code is generated, which can be downloaded and printed.

When authorized personnel from an establishment scans an individual's OR Code generated from the Higala App, their basic information is sent and stored in the app's database and is solely used for contact tracing purposes.

The application was developed by the City Management Information System Office (CMIS) in cooperation with the City Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office (CTCAO) of Cagayan de Oro LGU. Higala App can be accessed at: https://services.cagayandeoro.gov.ph:8087/higala/.

What is Higala QR Code?

Higala QR Code (sometimes referred to as Higalaay QR Code) is the quick response code that will be generated upon completing the registration process in the Higala Online Contact Tracing Application. Said code is downloadable and can be printed by individuals.

It is part of Cagayan de Oro's contact tracing solution, which requires residents and non-residents to present it when entering all establishments, offices, and other entities, whether public or private, under Ordinance no. 14023-2021.

Currently, the city government of Cagayan de Oro mandated all establishments under its jurisdiction to implement the "No Higala QR Code, No Entry" policy.

What are the requirements to get a Higala QR Code?

Individuals who want to obtain a Higala QR Code must have a mobile or desktop device with internet access in order to register in the Higala App's web application. Residents and non-residents must provide the required information, such as an active mobile phone number and a valid email address, when registering.

Where to download Higala QR Code Scanner App for establishments?

Higala App Scanner is available for download on the Play Store (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.lgucdo.higalaestablishment) for business owners. The scanner app must be used by business owners who are registered in the Higala portal under the categories ESTABLISHMENT, OFFICE, and FACILITIES.

How to get a QR Code through Higala App?

To generate a QR code from the Higala Online Tracing Application, an individual must go to https://services.cagayandeoro.gov.ph:8087/higala/ and then click on the "Register" button under the "I WANT" text. They must fill out the registration form and provide their preferred username and password on the next page.

Once completed, they will be able to receive their Higala QR Code automatically. You can also follow the simple and easy steps outlined below:

1. Launch your browser and access https://services.cagayandeoro.gov.ph:8087/higala/


To get a Higala QR Code, you must launch your preferred browser. For Android and Windows users, you may use a Chrome or Microsoft Edge browser, respectively. Meanwhile, iOS users can use the Safari browser. Make sure also to have a stable internet connection to avoid errors in your registration.

After launching the browser, go to https://services.cagayandeoro.gov.ph:8087/higala/ to start the registration process.

2. For individual registration, click the "Register" button under the "I WANT" text

Once you're on the homepage of the Higala portal, click on the "Register" button to start your individual registration and get your unique quick response (QR) code.

Note: If you want to register your business in the Higala App portal, you can do so by selecting one of three options: establishment, office, or facility. Once redirected to the next page, click the "registration" button to begin the process.

3. Fill in your preferred username and password for your login details


After clicking the "Register" button (for individual registration), you must now enter your preferred login information, specifically your username and password. Once you've entered your password, type it again to confirm.

4. Fill out the registration form and provide all the required information

After you've entered your preferred username and password, you must complete the registration form and fill out the following information: Name (first, middle, and last name), gender, date of birth, nationality, mobile number, email address, and address (street, province, city municipality, and barangay).

5. To obtain your QR Code, enter the image code and then click the "Register" button



Once you complete filling out the registration form, you must certify and give consent by entering the code in the image provided by the app. Then, to complete your registration, click the "Register" button. 


When the registration process is complete, the app will notify you that you are already registered and can access the app. You will then be directed to your personal Higala QR Code. Take a screenshot of the quick response code. You can also have it printed and laminated.

The actual image of a QR Code generated from the Higala App. Courtesy of Cagayan de Oro LGU.

Note: You must also present your valid government-issued ID when entering establishments because it is illegal to provide false information during registration or use another person's Higala QR Code.

Where is the Higala App and QR Code used?

According to the Higala App Ordinance, its use shall apply to all indoor or enclosed public spaces, private establishments, and entities within the territorial jurisdiction of Cagayan de Oro City, including but not limited to: 

  • Government and private offices/workplaces;
  • Commercial, industrial, and indoor establishments;
  • Churches and hospitals;
  • Accommodation establishments;
  • Banks, and other financial services;
  • Supermarkets, public markets and groceries; and
  • Transport terminals as well as bus lines, airport transfer services, taxis, and other enclosed public transport services.

The use of the Higala App and its generated QR Code shall apply to all customers, visitors, and employees of the aforementioned establishments, whether Cagayan de Oro City residents or non-residents.

How does the Higala App and its generated QR Code work?

Since the Higala app is required for all covered establishments and entities, they must provide their staff an Android device with an installed Higala scanner app. The assigned personnel are responsible for ensuring that all visitors to the premises:

  1. Present their Higala OR Code and have them scanned;
  2. Have their temperature taken; and
  3. Present a valid Primary or Secondary I.D. to prove their identity.

Customers, visitors, and employees of public and private establishments must present their unique Higala OR Code to gain entry. Emergency cases that require urgent and immediate medical attention will be granted a special case of exemption.

The data entered in the Higala App is managed by the City Government of CDO in accordance with the Data Privacy Act of 2012. Access to the data will be granted only to the City Health Office for contact tracing and other health-related programs of the City to address the need to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases. 

The scanned QR codes of individuals will be uploaded and stored in their database every 24 hours and then discarded after 30 days.

What are the penalties upon non-usage of Higala App?

Based on Ordinance No. 14023-202 of Cagayan de Oro, the following acts shall be deemed unlawful:

For Covered Establishments

  1. Non-Registration to the Higala Online Application (Higala App);
  2. Failure to designate personnel to monitor entrances and scan the Higala OR Code;
  3. Failure to provide the Scanner to the designated personnel;
  4. Deliberate non-scanning of the individual's Higala OR Code;
  5. Allowing entry of customers, visitors, and employees of the establishment who do not possess the Higala OR Code;
  6. Deliberate non-transmittal of the Scanned Individuals OR code within 24 hours from being offline;
  7. Unauthorized access of the information stored by the Higala App Secure Data Base; and
  8. Processing/Release of Individual's Basic Information without authorization.

For Covered Individuals

  1. Providing false information upon registration;
  2. Using another person's unique Higala OR Code and/or allowing other people (s) the use of their unique Higala QR Code; and
  3. Intentionally registering more than one (1) account on the Higala App.

Conclusion

To combat the spread of COVID-19, Higala App provides a system-generated quick response (QR) code that individuals in Cagayan de Oro must present when entering city establishments. Aside from the QR Code, they must also present a valid government-issued ID for verification.

Obtaining a Higala QR Code via the web application is easy because users only need to enter their complete information. —AJ Yes/iTacloban

References:
iTacloban

iTacloban is a web-based project in Tacloban City, Philippines. We aim to provide the latest guides, news, updates, and digital content across Eastern Visayas and the Philippines. For business promotions or partnerships, you may email us at itaclobanph@gmail.com. facebook twitter email

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