Stay Alert to be Automatically Available on Smartphones

Photo: Yhomo Hutchinson Minister of National Security, Hon. Robert Montague (right), is in discussion with Head, Product Support, Flow, Troy Cockings, during a press conference at the Ministry’s Oxford Road offices in Kingston today (Jan. 26). The Ministry of National Security has partnered with telecommunications companies Digicel and Flow to make the ‘Stay Alert’ application automatically available on smartphones.

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of National Security has partnered with telecommunications companies Digicel and Flow to make the Stay Alert application (app) automatically available on smartphones.
  • The app, which is a crime-fighting mechanism, has a panic mode which, when activated, sends an alert to the police that the user is in an emergency situation. It also facilitates reporting of incidents.
  • General Manager, Digicel Business, Brian Bennett-Easy, said the technology is more than a convenient luxury and should be viewed as a powerful tool to fight crime.

The Ministry of National Security has partnered with telecommunications companies Digicel and Flow to make the Stay Alert application (app) automatically available on smartphones.

The app, which is a crime-fighting mechanism, has a panic mode which, when activated, sends an alert to the police that the user is in an emergency situation. It also facilitates reporting of incidents.

Stay Alert, which was launched in February 2014, is free of cost and already has over 40,000 downloads.

Speaking at a press briefing at the Ministry’s Oxford Road offices today (Jan. 26), Portfolio Minister, Hon. Robert Montague, said it is hoped that through the partnership more persons will make use of the crime-fighting and safety app.

“With this partnership, we hope to move to about a million (downloads) in very short order, so I want to congratulate Digicel and Flow for preloading (the app) and making it charge free so even if you don’t have any credit on your phone and there is an incident, you can use the app and you can get in touch with the police,” he said.

He said the preloading mechanism will become available shortly.

Stay Alert also provides users with the latest news, tips, updates and other information from the police blotters. Other features include iReport, which allows users to anonymously upload videos, audios, photos or messages about suspicious individuals or crimes; and the laws component, which provides snippets of Jamaican legislation.

The Minister urged persons not to press the panic button unless there is a real emergency.

He encouraged persons to download the application, adding that the system is secure and information provided is treated confidentially. He said the Ministry will continue to incorporate technology into its crime-fighting strategies.

In his remarks, General Manager, Digicel Business, Brian Bennett-Easy, said the technology is more than a convenient luxury and should be viewed as a powerful tool to fight crime.

“Since crime affects us all, it is important for our customers to know that they have a key role to play in the prevention and reporting of acts that threaten their person, their family and respective communities,” he said.

He said Digicel intends to collaborate with the Government in providing diverse technologies to protect citizens, and to detect and respond to crime. He noted that the application and over 30 Government websites can be accessed on Digicel’s network free of cost.

For his part, Head of Product Support at Flow, Troy Cockings, said persons should consider the application as a personal security feature and download it to their smart devices.

“There are services in Jamaica that you pay in excess of $6,000 per month for a panic button service. This is free and you have the entire police force to your disposal,” he said.
The user-friendly software can be accessed at the Google Play Store. The IOS version will be available shortly.

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