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Thursday, October 22, 2020

Stay safe on campus, there’s an app for that

Students can now find safety in anonymity when they report crimes with the Rave Guardian app.

Various colleges, such as the University of Pennsylvania and University of North Carolina, have been adopting Rave Guardian, an app that gives students a way to discreetly contact security on-site and connect them with the resources they need.

The purpose of this app is to help prevent dangerous situations by reporting suspicious activity with a photo or location through the app.

Rave Guardian allows one to easily find assistance at their current location with a custom call feature, which provides a directory of an organization’s important numbers.

When students see or suspect a crime happening on campus, they can submit a text directly to security or another department. Only they can see the tip and you can choose to remain anonymous.

Deputy Sheriff Lazaro Sanchez explained the app provides a virtual Neighborhood Watch type of system, where people can exchange critical safety information to one another could be a benefit to the campus.

“As far as anything that helps keep the community safe, having a platform where people can have a conversation about what’s happening on campus then that would definitely help,” Sanchez  said.

The app also alerts based on one’s location despite the availability of a cell phone signal.

The app also gives access to emergency procedures, schedules and other key documents in a custom content portal.

For example, if there were an earthquake, fire drill or other emergency warning on campus, students could easily access that information through the app.

Psychology professor Chadwick Snow said the app could potentially make the exchange of safety information easier.

“If there was an emergency and information needed to be spread quickly, this would be great for students to have information at their fingertips,” Snow said.

With the motto of “never travel alone,” Rave Guardian makes this possible by giving the option to set a virtual safety timer, which .

In states of emergency, the app is designed to connect people with the proper authorities and keep people connected during these instances.

“It would be great, knowing that if I needed to, I could just go on my phone and message security instead of looking up their number on the website or trying to find a officer,” Zachary Kaminkow, a communications major, said.

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