Improving direct communications between police and citizens

Posted: June 29, 2010 by f3technologies in F3 Technologies, Interactive Defense, Uncategorized

Looks like another jurisdiction is stepping up its efforts to communicate directly with citizens. That’s not a big surprise for anyone who has followed current events in the last 10 years or so, and certainly not for us at Interactive Defense, LLC. State and local law-enforcement agencies have implemented Amber Alerts, Reverse 911, and other systems with growing frequency. Many states have used “Silver Alerts” for a year or more when senior citizens or people with dementia go missing. Maryland State Police are introducing the latest alert system, “Blue Alert,” to warn police and citizens that a suspected cop killer is at large.

Amber Alerts and Silver Alerts use existing mass-media channels for communication, while several systems are based on new technology or software. The new system in Maryland will operate similarly to Amber Alerts and Silver Alerts, police spokesman Craig Shipley told me. It isn’t clear whether broadcasters will interrupt regular programming, like they do for Amber Alerts, or whether police will hope that news outlets will report on the alerts, as they do with Silver Alerts.

Maryland was already in the process of implementing the “Blue” system when a state trooper was shot in early June. In response to the shooting, the state’s governor ordered the rollout to be sped up.

It’s sad that a horrible tragedy has to occur before people take action. Amber Alerts are named for Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was kidnapped and murdered near Dallas, Texas, in 1996. Most states now issue Amber Alerts for children believed to have been kidnapped, and each state develops its own criteria for putting one out, based on factors like the reliability of the information on the disappearance.

The upside is that most of these systems take a pro-active approach, with alerts being issued while a suspect is still at large. The one that F3 Technologies has co-developed is particularly pro-active in that it includes both an alert system and other social-netorking tools that can help police and citizens identify problem areas before an actual crime is committed. Our software, Interactive Defense System, features two-way alerts: Local residents — not just law-enforcement officers — can put out alerts, both to other residents and to police, and via e-mail and text-messages. Interactive Defense, LLC, our partnership with Noble Heroes Inc., expects to sign its first big client in the next few days.

  1. Bryan says:

    Any update on signing the contract?