On August 5th, the FBI released an app to the Apple iTunes App Store called the FBI Child ID app. The app is aimed to help parents notify authorities quickly with all identifying information in the event that a child goes missing.
Below is a review of the features.
The app stores information such as your child's:
- name and nicknames
- phone numbers
- physical features (height, weight, eye and hair color, etc.)
- unique identifying characteristics
- guardian information
Pros: In case of an emergency, you won't have to recall all of the information. All of the information is contained in one form that can be saved for an emergency. It could be helpful to have to show authorities if you're not thinking clearly. The app allows entries for multiple children.
Cons: The information is saved to your iPhone/iPad and is not password protected at this time. Expect this issue to be fixed in the first update.
On the "Emergency" screen, parents can call 911 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Pros: Clicking the buttons automatically opens a pop-up on your iPhone to place a call to one of the numbers listed above.
Cons: The user must click "Call" on the pop-up to confirm the call and open the phone. (However, this probably prevents accidental calls, so this is definitely understandable.) Also, the app isn't optimized for the iPad, so the phone calls will be useless to iPad users.
The app provides a list of safety tips and additional links, app user guide, and guides for what to do in the first 24 and 48 hours if a child goes missing.
Pros: The app provides excellent information and serves as the place to start for information on missing children.
Cons: The information could be very overwhelming during a very emotional time for a parent.
The FBI Child ID app functions very easily and should be easy to work during an emergency. With updates that require password protection for added security, parents will have peace of mind knowing that someone couldn't access their child's information from their phone. Hopefully, this app will be expanded for use on Android, Blackberry, and other platforms.
What do you think?
- Does this app provide enough/too much information?
- Is your child's information secure on the app?
- Would you use this app?
Please share your answers in the comments section below or in an email!
For More Information visit:
- The FBI's news story about the app
- Download the app from the Apple iTunes Store
- Headline News' Morning Express with Robin Meade website, which featured the app on August 8, 2011
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