You’re shopping at the mall with your children when one of them suddenly disappears. A quick search of the nearby area is unsuccessful. What do you do?
Now there’s a free new tool from the FBI that can help. The FBI’s just-launched Child ID app – the first mobile application created by the FBI — provides a convenient place to electronically store photos and vital information about your children so that it’s literally right at hand if you need it. You can show the pictures and provide physical identifiers such as height and weight to security or police officers on the spot. Using a special tab on the app, you can also quickly and easily e-mail the information to authorities with a few clicks.
The app also includes tips on keeping children safe as well as specific guidance on what to do in those first few crucial hours after a child goes missing.
The FBI encourages you to share the word about this app with family and friends, especially during upcoming activities in your communities to raise awareness on crime and drug prevention. For its part, the FBI is working to publicize the app with the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) — its long-time partner in the National Child Identification Program, which provides a physical kit to gather your child’s pictures, fingerprints, personal characteristics, and even DNA to keep with you in case of emergency. The AFCA is producing a public service announcement about the app and will spread the word at various football games during the upcoming season.
Right now, the Child ID app is available for use only on Apple iPhones, iPads, and iPod touch devices and can only be downloaded for free from the App Store on iTunes. The FBI plans to expand this tool to other types of mobile devices in the near future. And the FBI will be adding new features — including the ability to upload other photos stored on your smartphone – in the coming weeks and months.
An important note: The FBI (and Apple for that matter) is not collecting or storing any photos or information that you enter in the app. All data resides solely on your mobile device unless you need to send it to authorities. Please read your mobile provider’s terms of service for information about the security of applications stored on your device.
Put your child’s safety in your own hands.
More info and download link via Apple’s App Store here: FBI Child ID app.